Blue Top Grill

Diner | Hamburgers | Meat-and-Three | Small Town Café
Worth a detour

The Blue Top Grill menu lists seafood, sandwiches, chicken wings, and vegetable plates; and the blackboard always features a meat-and-three meal that can be pretty darn good. I love the flounder, and most of the vegetables are far above average. Of special note is collard kraut, a brilliant mix of sauerkraut with greens, the tang of the former mollified by the chlorophyll punch of the latter, and the bitterness of the greens balanced by the spice of pickled cabbage.

Many steady customers know this country diner for its hamburgers: small, large, or double, with or without cheese, with French fries and/or onion rings. They are hand-pattied irregulars, about 1/3-pound, cooked through but thick enough and fatty enough that they ooze juice – juice that carries tides of beef flavor. They’re burgers that are so well accompanied by lettuce, tomato, onion, mustard, ketchup, and mayonnaise all piled into a big, spongy bun. Need I say that there is nothing artisan or upscale about them? A large one costs under $5. But price, however low, is no object when appetite demands a good, old-fashioned, lunch-counter hamburger, made from scratch and with skill, served in a place without airs or pretense. On those occasions when a Blue Top burger is exactly right, a $50 Kobe beef burger in the swankiest New York bistro would be sadly inadequate.

Indeed, what I like most about getting a hamburger at the Blue Top Grill is the Blue Top Grill itself. Not far from Route One as the highway heads southwest towards Augusta, the little wood-sided diner has been serving hot lunch to the community for well over 60 years, and while it has been fixed, remodeled, and refurbished over the decades, it doesn’t really look it. Like a favorite old pair of slippers, it is worn in the most comfortable way, its booth upholstery on the verge of disintegration, its walls decked with memorabilia, its staff on first-name terms with most of the clientele. I noticed that some customers do not actually place an order when they walk in the door. They simply confirm that they are getting the usual. Large windows up front allow the kitchen staff to see outside and to start preparing regular customers’ orders before they walk in the door.

What to Eat
Blue Top Grill, Large Cheeseburger
Large Cheeseburger
Sides are fine, but the burger outshines them.
Blue Top Grill, Small Cheeseburger
Small Cheeseburger
Tender bun, craggy beef, silky cheese, fruity tomato, and a bouquet of crunchy iceberg lettuce
Blue Top Grill, Fried Flounder
Fried Flounder
Sweet white flounder is encased in crisp, zesty crust.
Blue Top Grill, Turkey Sandwich
Turkey Sandwich
Turkey sandwich is piled with thick slabs of freshly roasted breast.
Blue Top Grill, Collard Kraut
Collard Kraut
Collard kraut is a brilliant mix of sauerkraut with greens
Blue Top Grill, Speckled Butter Beans
Speckled Butter Beans
Bland, but oh-so-grand speckled butter beans are utterly absorbed into a leguminous silk cloud of earthy flavor.
Blue Top Grill, Double Bacon Cheeseburger
Double Bacon Cheeseburger
Top of the line: double bacon cheeseburger
Blue Top Grill, Club Sandwich
Club Sandwich
House-roasted turkey makes all the difference in Blue Top's club sandwich.
Blue Top Grill, Apple Bites
Apple Bites
Bite-size fried apple pies are a side dish or, when topped with ice cream, dessert.
Blue Top Grill, Onion Rings
Onion Rings
It is hard to bite an onion ring without pulling the entire slippery hoop of soft onion out from its fried casing.
Blue Top Grill, Turnips
Turnip greens contain nuggets of the tangy root vegetable and plenty of bacon.
Blue Top Grill, Candied Yams
Candied Yams
Soft candied yams
Blue Top Grill, Hushpuppies
Hushpuppies are serviceable if not memorable.
Blue Top Grill, Sausage Dog
Sausage Dog
Sausage dog with slaw, chili, and onions
Blue Top Grill, Chicken & Dumplings
Chicken & Dumplings
Minimally seasoned, painfully tender chicken 'n' dumplings: ultimate comfort food
Blue Top Grill, Ice Tea
Ice Tea
Ice tea always seems extra cold in cafes of the South.
Blue Top Grill, Hot Dog
Hot Dog
Dixie dog harmony, with slaw, chili, mustard & onions
Directions and Hours
closed now
Monday11 am - 8 pm
Tuesday11 am - 8 pm
Wednesday11 am - 8 pm
Thursday11 am - 8 pm
Friday11 am - 8 pm
Saturday11 am - 5 pm
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

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