DELRAY BEACH — For 21 years, Granger’s Grille has been the “great local dive” just north of Atlantic Avenue in downtown Delray Beach, owner Tim McLarney said.
That vibe won’t change, but its location soon will. Granger’s Grille was priced out of its spot on Federal Highway after the property changed hands this year. It’s moving about a mile south.
Despite attempts to negotiate with new owners, the rent more than tripled and McLarney’s lease expired in October, he said.
“Coming off The Ave, there was a need for a place like this,” McLarney said, referring to the more upscale eateries on Atlantic Avenue.
McLarney and his wife, Adriana, are paying month-to-month to keep Granger’s, a sports bar-style restaurant that serves comfort foods, open at its current spot through December and then move to 802 SE 5th Ave.
“It was like (the new owner) didn’t even want us there,” McLarney said, adding that going month-to-month through December is costing him four times the rent.
Granger’s is known for its affordable soups, chili and sandwiches, all recipes created and perfected by McLarney, who spends most of his time in the kitchen. Most menu items top out at $12.
“That’s the main thing that’s held us up all these years — the food,” he said.
While it was upsetting to leave its longtime location, Adriana McLarney said, “it was like a blessing in disguise.”
The restaurant’s current 900-square-foot location has only eight parking spots.
“It’s amazing we were able to keep it open as long as we did,” she said.
The new diggs, which they’re renting from the Veterans of Foreign Wars office, has an additional 400 square feet and 48 parking spots.
“And it’s just a straight shot south,” Tim McLarney added.
Their goal is to open by the first week in January, so the restaurant will be closed for only about a week.
“More so than anything else, we want to make sure the employees have jobs,” Tim said. Many have worked at Granger’s for more than a decade, he said.
Granger’s has dedicated customers — some stop by two or three times a week.
“People told us ‘if you move, please don’t change a thing,’ ” Tim McLarney said. And they won’t, at least no on the menu. The decor, however, might get a tweak.
Adriana McLarney added: “Same owners, same food, same great place.”