Nic's Grill open Friday nights, Saturday; lunch returns to The Drake
Nic’s Place Diner and Lounge, 1115 N Robinson Ave., is joining the city's group of restaurants hosting Thanksgiving service this year, but that’s not the biggest news that came out of my latest visit with owner Justin “Nic” Nicholas.
In two decades behind the griddle at the original Nic’s Grill, 1201 N Pennsylvania Ave., neither lunch on Saturday nor dinner has ever been available.
That’s all changed.
“We’re open now Friday nights from six to 9” Nicholas said. “And Saturday from 11 to 2.”
Nicholas said he did do breakfast on Saturdays at Nic's Grill when he first opened two decades ago next week.
He also mentioned Nic's Grill had hosted Thanksgiving that first year.
"I opened three days before Thanksgiving when I first opened," he said. "I told one of my customers I was thinking of serving a free Thanksgiving dinner, and he called one of the radio stations."
Nic said he ended up serving 150 to 200 people that day for free. Don't expect a free meal at Nic's Place on Thanksgiving, but Nic promises a traditional feast, with plenty of options, in a comfortable setting.
While Nic celebrates two decades serving burgers to folks from around the world, he's not resting on his laurels. Far from it. Nic has big plans for Nic's Place in the coming year and be on the lookout for a new parking lot coming soon at Nic's Grill. That new parking lot looks to be just the beginning of what Nic has in store at his Ten-Penn location, but he's not ready to go into detail with the public yet.
Stay tuned in 2018.
Lunch returns to The Drake
In the summer of 2015, A Good Egg Dining opened The Drake, 519 NW 23 St., its first seafood restaurant, to large crowds and enthusiastic response.
Despite initial crowds so strong reservations were required for lunch, the midday enthusiasm quickly waned. Weekend brunch stayed strong, but lunch crowds dwindled enough the organization decided to suspend lunch service during the week and concentrate on dinner.
Shortly after the restaurant celebrated its first anniversary, management also found the original family-style full-service approach employed wasn’t resonating with diners so they adjusted the menu to emphasize individual entrees over shared plates.
It’s been a year since that decision, and now The Drake is serving lunch once again.
The revived lunch menu contains "six sandwiches," which include a burger and fish tacos. But let's face it, if you're going to The Drake for lunch you'd be doing yourself a disservice not to have the Lobster Roll. I suppose those other options are for when you lunch at The Drake on consecutive days and you don't want to seem like an addict.
Lunch also includes pasta options and a strong group of entree salads, anchored by the BLT.