Sunday, May 6, 2012

Restaurant Redemption: Richwood Grill

For the past (almost) year, I have posted a ton of restaurant reviews. Some good, some bad, many indifferent. When my blog began to pick up some momentum, some restaurants that I've graded low, or maybe not so low, have contacted me in various ways. Some are angry, and some want to know how they can improve my experience.

Restaurant Redemption is a small series I've created that will allow me to give those restaurants who are keeping up with their social media (notably, my blog) and have made an attempt to rectify a poor or mediocre dining experience. For the restaurants that have contacted me, I'm giving it another dining go. For the most part, I will try a different dish and make note of the previous observations about the experience as a whole.

This restaurant redemption is slightly different, as the chef or owner did not reach out to me. Instead, I reached out to them. I've mentioned briefly that I'm writing for Savor WV magazine. For their premiere issue, I was asked to choose a restaurant to write about. The first place that stuck out to me was Richwood Grill because I feel like they encompass everything that is West Virginia. They source their food locally, they help farmers make a living wage, and they do it all the while creating different, amazing dishes.

I had the opportunity to interview him. What a down-to-earth, upstanding man Marion Ohlinger is. He said quite a few things that really resonated with me. One of which is that the steaks they serve are not always incredibly tender - because they're from cows who are free-range and grass-fed. If the steak is very tender, the cow was probably living in a box its whole life. And that's straight from Ohlinger's mouth.

They aim to create things that people haven't seen. So, yeah, sometimes the food is weird. They want to give people something different, something delicious and something real.

I'll wait to divulge too much more information until after the issue is printed, then I'll link that here. But in the midst of all this, he made a dish for me so I could take photos and write about it. (And subsequently, eat it!)

It was a bulgogi porkchop with kimchi and rice. It was awesome to see him prepare it right there in the kitchen and plate it. And, boy, was it gorgeous. The bulgogi, a Korean bbq, was tangy and sweet and delicious. The pork chop had a yummy grilled, smokey flavor. The kimchi added a little more of a sour/bitter taste with a smooth texture. The rice was a perfect complement.


Seeing the dedication the chef has to the dish, as well as the hardwork and thought that goes into each detail makes me fall in love with the restaurant. It also doesn't hurt to have awesome, local, fresh, delicious food in every meal. I love this place.

Richwood Grill on Urbanspoon