Had a stressful morning, so I wanted comfort food for lunch. What better opportunity to try another grinder joint?
Wolcott Hill Giant Grinder is a new place in Wethersfield, and they’re clearly trying, at least in some ways. The interior is spacious and well-designed, the menu looks professional, and the service is very friendly. (“Thanks for coming in!” isn’t something you usually hear from a longtime fixture.) I wanted to rate them highly, but the actual food experience was lackluster.
It certainly looked like a quality chicken parm, but the magic just wasn’t there. They achieve their “Giant” status via two thick cutlets, instead of the Franklin Giant Grinder / Wethersfield Pizza House style of four or five thin ones. Which is fine – Corner in Hamden and Carbone’s in Torrington do the same thing – but these left much to be desired. The breading and sauce weren’t distinctive at all, and I actually bit into tendon or gristle a few times, something that’s never happened to me with all the other chicken cutlets I’ve had.
The breading was also extremely soggy and slippery, and yes, you’d expect some wettening from the sauce, but other chicken parms I’ve had held themselves together better than this. The bread was your usual inconsequential loaf, and unfortunately, the innards weren’t good enough for that to be given a pass.
They had pizza as well, of course, and I figured why not? No individual slices, but $5 got you a “personal pizza”:
I know it doesn’t look like much, but to be perfectly honest, I enjoyed it more than the grinder.
I feel bad for these guys. They seem like they have their heart in the business – wouldn’t you have to, in order to even start it up? – but they have a lot of work to do on their actual food, especially if they want to present any kind of challenge to the king of grinders in Wethersfield, the Wethersfield Pizza House, the “Home of the Chicken Cutlet.”