Let me just say that if Chef Tim Grandinetti were to start flipping burgers at McDonald’s, I’d eat there every day. The dude is an AMAZING chef and quite possibly one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met.
Lucky for me and the rest of the world, Chef Tim is well beyond McD’s (although there’s nothing wrong with a double cheeseburger every now and again…) and yes – there ARE burgers on the menu but they’re done in Chef Tim’s style of awesome.
Let me back up a bit and give you some background on me and the Chef. I first met Tim 5 years ago at my favorite Winston-Salem event, Twin City Ribfest (have you heard that I’m going to be a guest judge this year?? Souiee!!). I didn’t even know he was a fine, culinary artist then. I just knew he made some of the most kick-ass BBQ I’ve ever put in my mouth. His culinary team for BBQ is known around these parts as Dr Brownstone’s BBQ . He’s an award winning pit master and if you ever get the chance – you better get you some! When we first tried his ribs, we were blown away – but the thing that blew us away even more was that he took the time to talk about his process and even sent the Rooster home with some of his specially seasoned wood chips. Believe me – we savored those chips and used them sparingly.
A couple of years later, Chef Tim headed west to St. Louis and I was sad 🙁 thinking that I would never have Dr Brownstone’s BBQ again or be able to visit him at this regular “job” over at Twin City Quarter. We kept in touch via Twitter over the next couple of years but it just wasn’t the same.
Sooooo…. imagine how excited I was last year to read that Chef Tim was coming back! To Winston! He was an integral part of a new downtown restaurant to be opened in the Spring of 2012 called Spring House Restaurant, Kitchen and Bar . The restaurant was going to open in one of our beautiful, older homes in the downtown area and would feature organic and locally grown produce. I anxiously anticipated the opening and couldn’t wait to break bread with Tim once again.
I made plans with a friend to meet at the Spring House for lunch on Monday and of course, sent Tim a tweet to be sure he was going to be there. He was actually sitting in the courtyard when I arrived and we got to chat for a few minutes before he had to get back to the business at hand. The interior of the building is incredible – well-preserved, while tastefully decorated with modern compliments. The service was excellent and the menu was select, yet varied. Tim came out to visit for a few minutes more and talked about the menu and some pretty fun events they have planned for Father’s Day (croquet, anyone?). I asked if he’d be at this year’s Ribfest but he broke my heart and said “no”. While I’m sad he won’t be there, I’ll cut him some slack since he’s going to be at some swanky culinary event out in Vegas. I’m betting he serves BBQ at some point… I’m just sayin’…
Back to the food… I opted for the Panko Chicken sandwich which had a scrumptious bleu cheese dressing and Texas Pete enhancements (Chef Tim loves Texas Pete… so do I.. it works out!) which was out of this world. A bit on the messy side but hey – messy food is good food. Steff had the Oyster Salad which she loved and there wasn’t a bit left on her plate. As a little special treat, Chef sent out homemade pate for us to try which was nothing short of divine. Sadly, we didn’t have room for dessert but we decided that we should head in one day just to try that. I was talking to a friend about our experience and she said this is the kind of service that she’d like to offer if she ever opened up her own franchise restaurant through signing up here in the future.
I’m not sure if this was a review of Chef Tim or a review of Spring House but any way you want to look at – you won’t be disappointed. I can’t wait to head back with the Rooster for a full-blown dinner.
And with Chef Tim at the helm, I know we won’t be disappointed.