Jared Grgich, part owner of the newly opened Grgich Carvery, knows a thing or two about good food, having grown up in the catering business and now he’s serving up the family recipes in his hof brau-style eatery.
With a wildly successful soft opening on New Year’s Eve where they gave out 200 sandwiches to catering clients, the official opening on Jan. 2 has seen promising foot traffic as word of mouth has spread a positive message about the new restaurant.
“People have always asked us where they could get our food everyday,” Grgich said. “And we just sort of fell into this place. Our friend had this building for rent and it just worked out.”
Synchronicity aside, there’s more than good luck at work. As Grgich put it, they offer “home-cooked food, really fast” which is right up Oakdale’s alley, he said.
“This is a meat and potatoes city,” Grgich said. “We make Oakdale food.”
The interior is a work in progress — although they’ve already managed to put their stamp on things with thick wood tables, big screen televisions, and outdoor seating — but the food is spot on.
“We slow cook the meats with homemade sides made fresh everyday,” Grgich said. “The first week was awesome. We were totally packed. We’re getting better everyday, too.”
There’s nothing that goes from a can to the plate and that’s apparent when the food crosses the tongue.
“The hickory smoked ribs are our specialty. The brisket is our best-selling meat and the Jack Daniels whiskey beans are very popular, too,” Grgich shared. “I love seeing how happy people are after having a good meal.”
The Grgich family has spent a long time perfecting their recipes and now Jared Grgich is at the helm, mixing it up with his own spin on the classics.
“This is all I’ve done my whole life and I love it,” Grgich said.
He attributes his father, Steve, as teaching him how to cook but he went to culinary school to improve upon his foundation, discovering quite quickly that he loves cooking, but doesn’t enjoy baking.
“Cooking is an art; baking is a science,” he said, smiling. “I like to cook.”
Specifically, the 26-year-old businessman and chef likes to barbecue. He was one of the top students in his culinary class when it came to cooking, but he was content to just learn the basics when it came to cream puffs and chocolate cake.
“I’ve always been into fire and the barbecue business,” he said.
Whereas his father taught him the ropes, now the older Grgich trusts his son at the grill and he handles the business aspect, making it a truly family-run operation.
“We’ve been around here forever and the only reason we have a reputation in town for good food is because of our catering customers,” Grgich said.
Since January is a typically slow month for catering, Grgich decided that was the best time to open the restaurant.
With a full liquor license, beer and wine is served on the premises, which goes down nicely with the hearty meals on the menu and the game on the big screen.
Grgich Carvery is located at 1061 E. F St. To place a to-go order, call 322-3280.