I recently stopped at Ray's with a friend who claimed the place was a nice change of pace. It was the middle of the afternoon, the time of day I normally do not like to eat out. Usually during the 2-4PM slot is when most places are trying to ready themselves for the dinner crowd and is slightly less than attentive. Not so here...
I walked in and instantly felt like I had found a place to spend my hard earned in the future....keep in mind I had not eaten a thing yet or even was seated. This place is just what the Pittsburgh hum-drum overpriced, chain, self-important for the sake of bringing in the money joints should be concerned with. If folks only knew what they were getting at those places. The P&L (profit-loss) driven climate of most of the eateries most of my friends and family enjoy is cause for concern.
Ray's is a great experience to the core. No one aspect of my visit was overlooked.. the folks are friendly (not just the usual smiling-give me your money fakes I am seeing more all the time, but genuine happy to meet you and learn more about you type of people}. I learned that the woman who waited on us is half of the husband & wife team. She was a pleasant gal, who was a big part of what made my trip so different and interesting. She was very involved in every aspect of the place and it showed.
She started by giving us the specials of the day. There were a number of interesting mixes of flavors for the choosing. A little something for everyone. I chose the tripple decker turkey yacht (or similarly named). As it turns out this was a great choice. What at first seemed to be the ordinary turkey club turned out to be a wonderful surprise. While starting with the usual club rule of 3 slices of bread and some thin slices of turkey, the similarities end there. The sandwich had some sort of fruit mayo, and another thin layer of a mayo, spicy brown mustard type mixture. These were a great mix of flavors. Add the apple bacon and you've got yourself one very tasty sandwich. Sure beats any club I have ever eaten. This was served with a large portion of what I must describe as the tastiest fries I've ever eaten...really. They were cooked to a dark brown, not overcooked, just cooked right. This gave them a much richer potato flavor. This may sound stange to go off about some regular old fries...but that's just it..at Ray's everything I saw was a step or two beyond the norm.
Listen, do yourself a favor if you are in the general area of Lawrenceville (heck take a drive...it's worth it). Stop by Ray's Marlin Beach Bar and Grill. Also worthy of note..this is not the usual beach themed joint. It's much more diverse and eclectic than that. Aside from a hint of coastal flair, and a number of menu items leaning that way..this is far from the boardwalk type beach spot.
So if you want to have a meal with a little change from the Friday's or Applebee's type fare..Try Ray's and like me may find a new place to willingly spend your hard earned.