You like beer. You like high-end bar food. You travel a lot. While there are tons of options on the ground for the intersecting points of this Venn diagram, there aren’t many spots in airports that offer a great selection of local beers, quality food, and a place to wait for a flight. Until now.
Fellow flyers, meet Cross Grains Brewhouse. The concept comes from global hospitality group Delaware North and their menu promises “Craft Beer, Cocktails, and Artisanal Food.” Those words are all very on-trend for 2010 and, five years later, they’ve seeped into the consciousness of American airports which means they’ve gone completely mainstream. This is a very good thing. Airport restaurants that aren’t affiliated with street-side brands or chefs generally offer the most basic food to appeal to the widest swath of customers possible. Now we’re starting to see more interesting concepts like Cross Grains and we all get to benefit.
What to Expect
Cross Grains is trying to be your favorite airport gastropub. They say they’re a brewhouse, but they’re not. A brewhouse is a place where you literally brew beer. This, however, is a place to get good beer. While you’ll see traditional beers at Cross Grains like Budweiser and Corona, you’ll also see a nice mix of local brews thrown in to create a strong sense of place. Delaware North is overseeing the project, but there’s also going to be input from local GMs and airport officials to determine the beer list. In Idaho, that means you’re seeing breweries like Payette, Sockeye, and Crooked Fence all getting tap handles behind the bar.
As for the food, the menu looks great. Take a look at it over here. Breakfast (served until 11) is fairly standard. There’s an egg/cheese/turkey sausage sandwich, a country skillet with bacon, sausage, potatoes, eggs, and veggies, and a bagel with smoked salmon (my favorite!). Lunch and dinner get much more interesting. I’m already salivating over the chorizo and roasted corn salad with bibb lettuce, red peppers, and lime mignonette as well as the grilled skirt steak sandwich. Overall, a nicely executed menu that goes beyond your basic chain restaurant.
Where Can You Find Cross Grains?
The first location is set to open in Boise (BOI) in mid-May. Oklahoma City (OKC) is next in July while Charleston (CHS) and Ft. Lauderdale (FLL) open after that.
Had a chance to try Cross Grains? Let me know what you think in the comments.