I can finally take a deep breath. Glendale’s Granville Café is the answer to my relentless search for great tasting food, affordable prices and a warm atmosphere.
This café is not just another café. In fact, it exceeds the traditional quick-casual dining experience.
While seated at an elevated table in the corner of the room, the restaurant is viewed like a panoramic picture. The Brady Bunch-like family of four devouring crispy shoestring sweet potato fries, piled in a white paper basket. The young couple greedily fighting for the last bite of what appears to be on the menu, “Devil’s Advocate Chocolate Cake.”
Within the nicely trimmed black leather menus contains the description of the dessert, “Deliciously Evil Chocolate Cake topped with a White Cream Cheese Frosting and Port-Poached Cherries.”
Then, glancing at the warning label under the “Sweet Cravings” section, which reads, “Warning: these desserts have been known to cause uncontrollable pleasure. Proceed at your own risk.” Amusingly enough, each portion of the menu has its own clever tagline. This is something one does not find at a standard café.
The ambiance of the café is inviting. Dim lights hang from the ceiling to provide for a subdued evening. Adorning the walls of the café are watercolor paintings as well as two flat-screen televisions, one across from the other in the middle of the room, where the bar is positioned behind the hostess’ desk.
One television is set to “E! News,” reviewing this year’s Oscar red carpet beauties, and the other, two chefs cooking up a storm on “Iron Chef” on The Food Network Channel. Happy customers, sipping on champagne, parade the bar, as waiters bring “Shareables.”
Other patrons surround the room, sitting in booths and at tables, as they enjoy their meals.
Waiters are dressed like cosmetologists, with food stains on their aprons instead of blush and lipstick smudges. They wear black button down shirts, black slacks and black aprons knotted at the back.
The service is phenomenal. The restaurant provides a top-notch guest experience.
Waiters and support staff are constantly moving. There is never a moment when a server is not taking an order or the manager is not promenading the café, making sure everything is running smooth and efficiently. Needless to say, the café is full of life in an essence of gourmet food.
It is impossible not to choose a savory dish on this menu. Although the “Big Plates” with a tagline of “Nuff Said,” might be slightly expensive, it is highly worth the price and the quality deserves five stars. Anyone could order and enjoy the salmon filet, grilled to perfection, crowned with creamed fresh corn and red bell pepper “Cajun Style” dressing served with Yukon Gold and Russet mashed potatoes drizzled with lemon butter sauce for $16.95.
The rest of the menu is far more reasonable than the main entrées. “Shareables” range from $7.95 to 12.95, “Big Salads” $7.95 to 10.95, “Soups de Luxe” $4.50 to 7.95, Pasta $10.95 to 15.95, “Artisan Pizza” $11.50 to 12.95, “Gourmet Burgers” $10.50 to 11.95, “Signature Sandwiches” $8.50 to 14.95, “Sides and Otherwise” $3.95 to 6.95, Drinks $1.50 to 4.50 and “Sweet Cravings” $6.95 to 11.95.
One can stroll in with a friend and sit at the bar (or a table) and share the Uptown Mac & Cheese for $12.95. This dish is a great reinvention of the timeless cheesy treat. The pasta is covered with aged cheddar and gruyere cheeses with herbed all-natural chicken, grilled asparagus, sweet peas and topped with buttered breadcrumbs. But, as stated on the menu under “Shareables,” it is “so good you may not want to share.”
When pining for a salad, one can never go wrong with The Craveable Turkey Club Salad for $9.95. Like Granville’s other salads, it is huge and the bowl is filled with home-roasted turkey, apple wood smoked bacon, juicy tomatoes, fresh avocado, hard-boiled eggs, red onion, blue cheese and crisp organic Romaine lettuce tossed with Granville’s Balsamic and Blue Cheese Dressing.
The menu has a broad selection of drinks ranging from wine to coffee to refreshing juices and teas. One in particular is Granville’s Berry Lemonade for $3.50. Concealed in an ice-cold glass, fresh blueberries, strawberries and raspberries bathe your throat to become the perfect summer delight.
Every now and then, indulging in dessert and Granville’s Ultimate Dessert Sampler is the solution to my sweet tooth cravings. This dessert selection features Devil’s Advocate Chocolate Cake, Berry Patch Shortcake, and Bruleéd Banana Brownie for $11.95. It is recommended, as a “Shareable” so adding a few extra forks to the order couldn’t spoil a thing.
I’m sure I will visit Granville Café again in next to no time. It is not just a café but is the ideal café for a night out and an exceptional dining experience. I long for my return.
Granville Café is located at The Americana at Brand, 807 Americana Way. For more information visit: www.granvillecafe.com or call (818) 550-0472.