CD’s Grill - Southern comfort food for the soul
By Christina Ruotolo
The Daily Reflector
Wednesday, March 6, 2019
When I was little, as a special treat my parents would take my brother and me to eat at a local diner or cafe. We would head out in our red station wagon to the locally owned diner or cafe that graced many corners in my hometown. The locations had Formica booths, laminated menus with no frills items, an open kitchen and that little round stainless steel wheel that held old school tickets and a bell that rang every time an order was up. The menu was diverse enough to accommodate the entire family from my fancy father with his steak dinners, my non-seafood eating mother who always opted for chicken with sliced tomatoes, my brother who always selected a cheeseburger and fries, and me who always went for a BLT or chicken fingers. The diner owners usually greeted us with hugs, knew our names, what drinks we liked and always made us feel like we going to a family members house for Sunday supper. The smell of burgers on the grill and chicken frying in baskets along with tables filled with other families and laughter is what I think of when I think about grills, little cafes and mom & pop diners.
If you are seeking this kind of nostalgic meal, then head down the street to CD’s Grill located at 111 West Fire Tower Road, Suite E in Winterville. Located in the Wintergreen Commercial Park, it’s convenient to Greenville and easy for those seeking a quick, satisfying breakfast or lunch. Owner Lawrence Manning, a native of Greenville, opened the restaurant over eleven years ago and has been in their current location for about eight months. Manning describes the locally owned and operated grill as your one-stop shop for down-home country food in a welcoming space where everyone feels at home. “I was born and raised here and we try to give our customers what they would eat in their own kitchens, that southern comfort food we all know and love,” Manning said.
There is plenty of seating inside and parking outside, so come in for a leisurely breakfast, join friends for a quick lunch, or come in before work and pick up some grub to fuel your day. Their menu is super easy to navigate with nothing foreign and nothing costs over $9.99, so everyone can afford a home-cooked meal. Breakfast items include eggs cooked to order, sausage dogs, bacon, ham, tenderloin or sausage. Choose a single egg or a breakfast platter paired with hash browns, grits, or even slaw. You can also choose from pancakes, cheese biscuits stuffed with a hunk of gooey cheddar cheese, or enjoy a made-to-order omelet. I love breakfast food as I’m sure many of you do, and there is nothing dreamier than a cheese biscuit dripping with cheddar, a pancake topped with melted butter and syrup, or fried eggs with a side of salty country style ham and seasoned hash browns.
For lunch, CD’s Grill offers an array of traditional comfort foods, exactly what we all want for lunch at our favorite cafe or diner. Choose from hot-dogs, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, shrimp burgers, BLTs, HLTs, chicken dinners, hamburger steak, pork chops, shrimp plates, trout, and salad. They have pretty much any flavor you want from simple to rich and hearty. They even have desserts including cake slices, brownies, and banana pudding. In the south, many deals have been made over a good ol’ bowl of creamy banana pudding, or a country hamburger steak dinner with a side of mashed potatoes with a pool of gravy on top.
CD’s Grill offers daily lunch specials too. Choose between fried trout, fried chicken, or a daily special with two sides and bread or hush-puppies for the affordable price of $7.99. On Monday’s, enjoy barbecue chicken; Tuesday is pork tenderloin with gravy; Wednesday is chicken and pastry; Thursday is barbecue pork chops, and Friday is homemade spaghetti. Side items include French fries, onion rings, mashed potatoes & gravy, yams, cabbage, green beans, field peas, corn & lima bean mix, rutabagas, potato salad, and slaw. All of those sound like perfect country home-cooked items to not only fill your belly, but feed your southern soul. Even better is on Friday and Saturday nights, they offer a full salad bar with baked potatoes or sweet potatoes as well as Black Angus rib-eye steaks up to 24 ounces, and a side of toast.
For my food tasting which was on a Wednesday, I opted for the chicken and pastry with a side of country style green beans, seasoned rutabagas, and a side of hush-puppies. The green beans were seasoned with traditional ham hock and cooked until they sang the song of a Southern love, smokey and tender in every bite. The chicken and pastry is made with local Anne’s flat dumplings mixed with large chunks of both white and dark meat chicken in a smooth and glossy gravy. The pastry was soft, the chicken perfectly cooked fork tender, and the white savory gravy is one that any Southerner can get behind. Let’s end with sweet and tasty rutabagas. For those that may not know what a rutabaga is, it’s a cross between a cabbage and a turnip green. It has a unique texture like a baked potato, but has sweet, rich flavor. If you’ve never tried it, take a bite and see if you too fall in love with its tender sweet root vegetable flavor. And, of course my hush-puppies don’t need much description because most everyone in our neck of the woods loves a good crispy hush-puppy.
Before I ended my down-home country food tour, I sampled a slice of traditional yellow cake with chocolate icing. It was a sweet Southern finish to my meal. If you have a chance, check out CD’s Grill in Winterville, stop by for breakfast or lunch and take a trip back down memory lane and reintroduce yourself to the hearty comfort foods that the South is known for. CD’s Grill is open six days a week Monday-Thursday 6am-3pm, Friday 6am-8:30pm, and Saturday 6am-8:30pm. They have plenty of space for on-site events or you can hire them for your next off-site catering event for any size. For more information, call 252-689-6713 or visit their website, www.cdsgrill.com .