So Panda Express opened Monday in Rome and based on the traffic maps (and our own early lunch), they’re rockin’ it.
Next up is Chipotle which, according to employees, is due Friday next to Panda Express at the work-in-progress East Bend restaurant and retail center.
As these two and Texas Roadhouse get a lot of the early attention, there’s a different sort of restaurant on the way off Turner McCall and Hicks Drive. Eggs Up Grill, a 14-year-old breakfast and burger concept out of Pawleys Island, S.C., is on the way as well.
The company on Monday confirmed the Rome location; we don’t have a timetable as yet. But as some of those people who cherish a great breakfast as much as a wonderful sushi dinner, we’re ready. Exactly where they’ll fit in to the multiple pieces of East Bend isn’t known but we’re thinking one of the clusters that will buffer the bigger players such as Old Navy, Kohl’s and Five Below. There are a series of storefronts already in place, likely awaiting buildout by the retails and restaurants.
About Eggs Up Grill:
Chris Skodras and his wife, Pat, opened the original in the Low Country with a different concept in mind. Breakfast and brunch, perhaps a bit similar to what Martin’s does with its restaurants including those in Cartersville and Rockmart, or The Gravy Boat in Rome. But Eggs Up is different — it is sit-down with to-go as well.
The restaurants pack out the breakfast menu, from eggs and shrimp-and-grits omelets to biscuits to bowls to pancakes, French toast, muffins, avocado toast and gravy. Add to that burritos and even “the Benedicts” (including hash, which will be out first order). There are salads for the midday crowd as well as burgers (Philly Cheesesteak? Yes, please).
Click here to get a better look at the menu but please also save a minute to scroll down to the description of many of their favorites. This isn’t the usual blah-blah-blah about how wonderful something is. This tells you the calories, fat, trans fat, fiber, sodium, protein, potassium, carbs, etc., the Hash Benedict has in it. A dozen listings just after the 660-calorie notice. That shrimp-and-grits omelet comes with its own phone book of ingredients — and 1140 calories.
Will a breakfast/brunch make it?
In Rome, yes. It has been one of the pleadings of Broad Street regulars for years. There are breakfast spots from the 200 through the 600 blocks but each of those expand into much fuller lunch and some dinner options — as well as takeout.
There are some players already, from IHOP to The Gravy Boat to Troy’s and Landmark and Martha’s Skillet in addition to Truett’s Chick-fil-A although dine-in remains closed at this time. Most fast-food locations offer breakfast, especially biscuits, these days.
But this concept is different, especially the restaurant component.
Eggs Up Grill is a few months away. This week, it is Panda Express and Chipotle’s turn with Texas Roadhouse and McAlister’s Deli to follow in December. But keep an eye on some of the other players coming to East Bend as well. What lines Turner McCall and Hicks Drive is only a third of the story.