Not being familiar with an area and trying to find a quick lunch spot can always be challenging. I was in Grand Rapids this morning for a job. I wasn’t sure what the weather was going to do, so I left early just in case. I got to Grand Rapids about 45 minutes before I was supposed to be there, so I went on a scouting mission to find a lunch spot. I drove up and down 28th St. looking for something. I found some nice sit down type places, but I couldn’t spot a sandwich place that would work for lunch. I was about to give up, but before I did, I thought I’d go past the Interstate a few blocks to see what I could find. As I was turning into a shopping center to turn around, I noticed W. G. Grinders and my almost failure became a success.
W. G. Grinders is located in a small shopping center on 28th St. between Meijer and Walmart. There’s a bar and grill that anchors the area plus a couple other store fronts. W. G. Grinders sits back off the parking lot, but there is a huge sign connected to the facade of the “courtyard” area. I had never heard of this particular grinder shop before. The chain is based in Lewis Center, OH. There are 27 stores in the group, but all but two are in Ohio. One of those two is in Carmel, IN. The other, in Grand Rapids.
The inside of W. G. Grinders is sort of a throw back 50’s diner. The fixtures are all stainless steel. There’s a lunch counter along the wall and the seat coverings are bright red. The space is a little tight and you have to wind your way through the dining room to get to the order counter. The kitchen and the cash registers share the same space and you can look into the kitchen to watch your sandwich being made. Above the coneyor ovens was a giant menu board advertising their selection of grinders, pasta, and salads.
There were a number of sandwiches that sounded good, but I ended up choosing the Chicken Parmigiana Grinder. My experience with the Grinder is somewhat limited to Mancino’s (review HERE), so that’s what I was expecting. The concept was the same, but the sandwich was a little different. I placed my order and took a seat to wait on my sandwich. I wanted to get back to Lansing before J went to work, so I grabbed my grinder to go. After not more than five minutes, a lady came out with my sandwich wrapped up and ready to go.
Stupid me. I drove an hour with the smell of fresh baked bread in my truck. By the time I made it back to Lansing, I was starving. I ripped into the bag to find what looked like a toasted sub. The bread was stuffed full of shredded chicken, mozzarella, marinara, and parmesean cheese. I was expecting big chunks of chicken, but the shredded chicken made inhaling the sandwich much easier. J was just finishing up getting ready for work and she came out of the bedroom and cut off a couple pieces of my sandwich. She loved it. I loved it. We all loved it.
I said it differs from Mancino’s grinders and the way it does that is in the bread. The sandwich is made on a sub roll that is filled hot dog style then toasted. It wasn’t as crunchy as Mancino’s, but the bread was soft and really delicious. The grinders from W. G. Grinders come in three sizes. I chose the middle size, 10 in. The cost of just the sandwich was just under seven bucks.
I am so glad I accidently turned into that shopping center. I’m not sure what I would have done otherwise, but W. G. Grinders turned out to be a good find. The food was really good although it was distinctly chain fare. That’s not a bad thing here as it turned out to be a very flavorful, filling grinder.