Food trumps the service here at Grits. This hidden Fullerton gem is located just outside the boundary of Downtown Fullerton off Harbor Boulevard and Chapman. There’s a tiny parking area in the front, but if you go to the next driveway, there’s ample parking in that lot. If you didn’t know any better, you’d thought you were visiting a nondescript diner along some dusty town along Route 66.
Reservations were suggested for this place, and I made one for 11:30 am on a Saturday. We arrived a few minutes before our time, and yet it still took half an hour. Apparently, you could eat outside in the long communal table, but the weather was a bit dry and hot, and I wanted to eat inside the cool, but very noisy restaurant.
We finally got our table roughly at noon, and it took a while for our server to take our drink order. It was so noisy, I had to have him repeat himself a few times.
It was our first time, and our server suggested the biscuit and bone marrow starter, or the fried chicken skins. We passed on both and said we were going to share the Pork and Grit, and the Boring Pancake Balls. He tried to have us change it to the fancier Oreo Chocolate pancake balls, but I am not a fan of chocolate, or hazelnut, so that was a pass as well.
Our server seemed a bit frazzled, and was not spot on service. He brought us the wrong drinks, and when he brought Stephen his iced coffee, he failed to ask if he needed cream or sugar. He also failed to bring utensils. When our food was brought to us, the staff member had to bring us the fork and knife.
Our server did come by to explain the “boring” Pancake Balls was “legit” and was the real deal as the side of syrup was pure maple syrup, and the butter was real butter. The Pancake Balls were very good. The dough was slightly sweet, and the butter tasted more like honey butter. The balls required little syrup, and were fluffy and satisfying with the fresh blueberries. If you’re going to have this as a dish, add something to go with it, like a side of bacon, or in our case, the Pork Shank.
The Pork and Grits was a good size dish, and enough for 1 very hungry person, or for 2 people to share with another dish (which is what we did). The meat fell right off the bone, and it was nice and tender. It wasn’t the most flavorful shank, but mix it with the grits (which had a slight jalapeno kick to it) and the dried cherry sauce, and it was very tasty.
Overall a good meal, and right before we were done, Stephen was offered a refill on his iced coffee. So there are refills on that! The place isn’t that cheap, and we had slow service, but I would give this place another try as we really liked the food. We noticed that when we left at 1:15, there was no line outside.