Office park…sense of place…not words that usually inhabit the same universe. The right mix of food, hospitality, and ambience can work miracles though, and Walker’s Grille, an independent, family-owned restaurant, has done just that. Its lushly landscaped patio includes comfortable lounge seating as well as ample tables for diners. Heat lamps and ceiling fans make it possible to enjoy outdoor dining or drinks during the cooler months as well as during our hot, humid summers.
Co-owners Sam Misleh and Jason Musleh opened Walker’s Grille in 2011 as the first LEED Gold Certified restaurant in Virginia. The restaurant is eco-friendly with recycled design materials, a recycling program and energy efficient equipment to reduce water and energy consumption. The menu relies on fresh products sourced from local and regional farming communities and vendors committed to ethical and environmentally friendly farming practices. Meat and poultry are Certified Humane and seafood is sustainable from domestic sources.
That’s fine but if you’re looking for a meal, you’re probably thinking less about environmental policies than about lunch or dinner or brunch or happy hour, all of which Walker’s Grille is happy to provide. My dining companion and I recently enjoyed lunch there. We started with two appetizers—beautifully fried calamari with two sauces and a gumbo with just the right amount of heat. Then, a black bean burger with chipotle mayonnaise, along with fresh greens lightly dressed with a balsamic vinaigrette. Black bean burgers can be dry but this one was succulent. My burger was cooked to the specified medium and at my request the kitchen substituted sautéed spinach and garlic for the menu’s fries. If you’re a spinach fan, this spinach is for you—fresh tasting and with just enough garlic.
Walker’s Grille has a small but serious dessert menu. The warm apple fritters with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce are long time favorites; I succumbed to the siren song of a chocolate pot de crème. While the chocolate was good, it didn’t quite match the deliciousness of those apple fritters
Service was professional and attentive and background noise and music low. However, the noise level can be high at peak hours, especially at noon when the restaurant is full.
Linda Waller, a longtime resident of Springfield, enjoys dining in her community and believes the experience is just as important as the food.