Glenwillow was Austin Powder Mining Co.’s company town. And now, surrounded by houses built in the late 1800s, Glenwillow Grille is the town’s restaurant, offering generous portions and plenty of menu items in the company’s former headquarters. Patrons are given the choice of either white-linen dining near a stone fireplace or being seated outside on a charming patio — we chose the latter.
Our dinner began with the simple starter of Austin Powder chips and French onion dip sprinkled with scallions ($7). A staple for regulars, the homemade seasoned potato chips make you feel as though you should be home watching the game — but then again, no party has chips and dip this good.
Entrées are served with your choice of side dish, such as custard potatoes or saffron rice, and a salad, which are worth mentioning. The homemade dressing on the Caesarette is a delightful spin on a usual suspect. Rather than a thick, creamy dressing, the Grille’s Caesar is light, closer to a house Italian. Or try the almond vinaigrette slaw. No ordinary slaw, this sophisticated take is drizzled with a tangy balsamic-flavored dressing and mixed with toasted almonds.
For dinner, I had the restaurant’s award-winning Asiago chicken ($16) — a title earned at the Taste of Solon. The chicken is served over a garnish of garlic spinach and topped with a delicious, mild Asiago cream sauce that didn’t overpower the rest of the dish, making it a winner in my book. My friend went with grilled salmon with a side of sour cream and onion mashed potatoes ($16). The cucumber dill sauce covering the perfectly pink fish has just the right zing to set it lengths ahead of any other salmon I’ve tasted.
After a pleasurable dinner at our umbrella-covered table on a patio resembling a European piazza, we couldn’t pass up a piece of Bailey’s cheesecake ($6) to go. The trip south of Solon is worth it, and not only for the chips and dip.
Glenwillow Grille and Austin Powder Tavern, 29765 Pettibone Road, Glenwillow, (440) 786-0100. Hours: Lunch 11 a.m. -
3 p.m. Mon-Sat; Dinner 3 - 9 p.m. Mon-Thu & 3 - 11 p.m. Fri and Sat