Saturday, July 25, 2015

Glory Days Grill - NEW! Ellicott City, Maryland

Glory Days Grill of Ellicott City is the restaurant chain's new flagship store - a 2.2 million dollar restaurant employing over 150 people and seating 352 inside and another 50 people in an outside area that has cornhole games and soon to be installed firepit. The company has 22 restaurant across Maryland, Virginia, Florida and West Virginia, and another one opening soon in Edgewater, MD.

The Ellicott City location has its grand opening on Monday, July 27 but one of the Managing Partners and part owner Justin Sweet gave us a sneak peak when he invited us to dinner during a pre-opening event.

Located next to the iconic Soft Stuff ice cream in the Forest Green Center, Glory Days Grill has the feel of a sports bar/restaurant but with a couple of very unique twists - big open spaces with natural light from floor to ceiling windows, electronic gadets (more on this later), multi-screen TV's sandwiched together to play one event or up to five different sports events.

Managing Partner Justin Sweet and Thomas 

As Justin Sweet personally showed us to our seats we passed two huge rooms containing multiple flat screen TV's and seating arrangements that can be made into one big open space with the help of a movable wall. Justin told us there is NO charge for room rentals which are ideal for parties, meetings or fantasy draft events. What's really cool is that each room has a private entrance (if you don't want to go through the restaurant) and its own climate control.

The main dining room is a very open area with several different seating options - bar, booths, tables, high tops  - and one seating area in the back that has floor-to-ceiling glass windows.

We sat in the back with my mom and grandmother. Marco was our server who told us all about the cool electronic gadgets.

First, the bar area and each table has a Sports Select box. This allows customers to select any of the 54 TV in the restaurant (each has a number) and connect to THAT TV's sound system. There's also a plug if you want to listen with headphones. Forgot your headphones? No problem, you can buy it for $1.99.

Second, don't worry if your electronic device is running out of juice. Just give it to your server or bartender who will charge it for you. You'll get a white round circle disc that will light up when your charging is complete. How cool is that!!!
Glory Days Slam Dunk Margarita

Now for the food and drinks. Our Grandma Alberta ordered the Glory Days Slam Dunk Margarita. She loved it from the first sip, "one of the best she has tasted."

Thomas ordered a Virgin Pina Colada. He said it had a strong coconut taste and a creamy texture. However, he also said that he wished he had a wider straw because it would have been easier to drink.

Fried Pickles 
Chicken wings are available with 10 different sauces. We choose the Glory sauce - a unique combination of smoky barbeque sauce, pure clover honey, and authentic buffalo style hot sauce.

At first, the sauce is sweet and savory, but then a spicy
Chicken Wings with Glory sauce

sensation hits you out of no where at the end. My brother said "it
blew my mind." The juicy and tender chicken wings lathered in
this incredible sauce were some of the best wings I've had in all the four
years I've been blogging.

We've never eaten fried pickles so we decided to try it. These sliced dill pickles are batter dipped and fried until golden brown served with a savory mustard-based dipping sauce. The sauce was killer good. Our waiter Marco suggested putting the fried pickles on a sandwich or burger. Oh, yeah, we're going to try that.

Our main courses 

My mom ordered the glory glazed salmon dinner which is one of the restaurant's signature dishes. This salmon was lathered with seasme-ginger glaze and usually served with fresh vegetables and mashed potatoes. However, my mom asked for loaded mashed potatoes (mashed potatoes with cheese and bacon). She absolutely loved the salmon for its tender texture and sweet glaze. I tried a little bit of the salmon and I'd personally recommend it to all my salmon lovers out there. The loaded mashed potatoes were homemade and looked delicious but could have used more seasoning.
Side Caesar Salad

Veggie Pizza 

I ordered the Veggie Pizza - Marinara, mozzarella, red and green peppers,
 red onions and broccoli. It was the best pizza I've had since my trip to Sicily last month (posts coming about Italy). My mom thought I was crazy for ordering a pizza at a grill but I had scoped
it out on the website earlier and it looked fantastic. The pizza: crisp 
vegetables on top of sweet marinara sauce and thick dough sprinkled 
with Italian seasonings. However it was the dough that made the pizza. 
Its soft as well as thick texture reminded me of this pizza I had back in
the Sicilian city of Siracusa where the chef let the dough rise 24 hours 
before serving it to the customers. 
Maryland Crab Cake Sandwich 

Thomas eating the Chicken Cheesesteak and onion rings
Our grandmother tried the Maryland Crab Cake Sandwich. She really enjoyed the sweetness of the crab meat paired with the light Old Bay seasonings and special sauce.  It's a nice size crab sandwich that she would order again.

Thomas ordered the Chicken Cheesesteak, thinly sliced grilled chicken with grilled onions, lettuce, tomato, mayo and melted cheese in a wrap. He added grilled mushrooms and peppers and onion rings instead of fries.

This wrap was tasty and jammed packed with food. In fact, the wrap was so packed that it spilled out when he bit into it. You may want to ask for extra napkins if you order this.

The oversized onion rings were crunchy on the outside with a moist, juicy onion on the inside.

Salted Vanilla Caramel Crunch Cake 
We ended the meal sharing a piece of Salted Vanilla Caramel Crunch Cake, layers of moist vanilla cake, caramel and creamy vanilla frosting with just a hint of salt. Yes, this cake was as awesome as it looks above. If you are a caramel fan like we are, you will LOVE this.

Before we left, we were introduced to Chef Tony Cochones, Glory Days food and beverage director. This guy knows food. He told us about his home garden and how he takes great pride in using seasonally fresh ingredients in his own cooking. He brings this philosophy and his passion for food to Glory Days, and it shows.

He also told us about the weekly dine in specials such as the $5.99 Classic Burgers on Mondays and
the.$9.99 Friday Fish Fry.
Chef Tony Cochones, Director of Food and Beverage 
Glory Days will be a huge hit in Howard County. You'll hear people talking about it. Definitely go and try it.

- Charles