With a design that radiates fast-casual-sleek accented by dark wood furnishings, high loft-inspired ceilings, a mix of communal tables flanked by backless stools, and soft booths and large windows for natural light, the new Chandler Grubstak begs to be noticed.
With its menu that exalts comfort food favorites that captures the attention of local diners and celebrity chefs alike, Colton Grubb’s dream of running a Valley-wide franchise took one big step when the second location of his eatery known for its signature salads and “staks” opened at Gilbert and Ocotillo roads in November.
And it all started with a Labor Day weekend conversation about French fries.
“We were talking about having French fries with different toppings. I took that idea and ran with it,” Grubb says about the casual discussion four years ago that was the seed that sprouted into his serious and growing restaurant.
Grubb chose Chandler to host his second locale, following the original downtown Gilbert shop he opened in 2016.
“I wanted to create an atmosphere where I liked having dinner at,” he says.
This includes a versatility that accommodates family dinners, couples on dates and solo diners all craving well thought-out signature dishes ranging from carnivore to vegetarian, with a customizable option that lets them add some DIY flair.
“We want to provide an atmosphere that’s comfortable … where you can be as healthy or indulgent as you want to be,” Grubb says.
The Power Salad with quinoa, roasted veggies, kale, roasted chicken and Parmesan tossed with basil pesto—Grubb’s personal go-to lunch—is one of the items on the lighter end of the spectrum. On the other side are dishes like the chilaquiles piled with black bean chili, barbacoa chicken, cheddar and eggs over which celebrity chef Guy Fieri fawned in his drool-inducing show, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.
The most popular is the Sweet Lou’s BBQ, a plate of barbecue braised beef, bacon and coleslaw that’s named after Grubb’s late grandfather Lou Grubb, the Valley automotive icon and founder of the former Lou Grubb Chevrolet.
“It’s perfect. He loved good food and all of us being together enjoying it,” says the third-generation Arizonan.
While most features—the décor, food and overall appealing aesthetic vibe—flaunted in the Gilbert Grubstak are present here, the Chandler location boasts several unique elements.
A larger patio offers space for cornhole contests and table games like Connect Four and Jenga, while three flat screens allow for sports viewing. But perhaps the most noticeable amenity is the full-service bar where patrons can order beer, wine and cocktails to quench their thirst. There’s also a signature cocktail menu and a handful of breakfast cocktails, plus a happy hour food menu offered five-days-a-week.
“It’s a kind of escape, when you can get away from whatever else is going on,” Grubb says. “Anyone can go to a restaurant. But we want to make them feel at home.”
4165 S. Gilbert Road, Ste 5; 480.454.3299, Grubstak.com.