Things that are closed on Mondays

It’s a Monday. That means that if you want to go out to a nice meal in this town you’re basically out of luck. Recently we had the opportunity to take someone dear to us out for a nice celebratory meal. We were looking for something good, with tablecloths and a wine offerings beyond simply “red or white” and a good vegetarian option, or at least some good seafood. Alas, it was a Monday. Evidently this means most good Montgomery restaurants are closed. We know, because we called them.

We started with Jubilee, because nothing says “Happy Birthday” like an amazing piece of fish served with overpriced rice pilaf. Closed. Then we thought: Michael’s Table! We’ve still never been, but this might be just the right time! Closed. The Olive Room, for spy-movie ambiance and martinis? Nope. The Chophouse, where we’ve been meaning to go when we get rich someday? No. Sure, Roux is open on Mondays in our part of town, but at what cost? We decided to look further afield.

We considered Garrett’s, which is basically in Shorter but has amazingly delicious flash fried oysters. Closed. The last time we had a nice dinner with our loved one, we went to Ham and High – enough to convince us we weren’t going back there, plus it’s at (shudder) Hampstead – nevertheless, the home of Montgomery’s worst fried green tomatoes was closed.

What were we left with? Capitol Oyster Bar is closed on Monday, and although the dining is fine there, it’s not exactly fine dining. There’s always El Rey, but we eat there so often with our loved ones that we feared it wouldn’t have the super special birthday feel we were hoping for – though we knew they would do us proud, we wanted to tablecloth it up and use cloth napkins (instead of the otherwise perfectly serviceable roll of paper towels at the table).

Then it came to us – the City Grill. It’s way out in the Hellscape, and we’d seen it before when we visited the simply atrocious East China years ago (our stomachs may still be recovering – if you haven’t been, spare yourself). A call confirmed our reservation, and we had a plan.

City Grill doesn’t have a website. They have a Facebook page where updated menus and announcements are posted, and it’s easy to find their contact info all over the Internets. We rolled in for a fairly early dinner and immediately found the place to be warm and inviting. The wine list was affordable and unpretentious, the bread was good, and even though we were sitting in a booth we found that the place met our tablecloth-y needs. Two of us got fish, and one got some mussels and their grilled Greek cheese salad. The latter had been highly recommended by a bunch of people on Yelp, which should have been taken as a warning rather than advice, given that the damaged online mob was basically the same group of food idiots who got us to East China in the first place via the Advertiser’s “Best of Montgomery” supplement. The fish was good. The salad was slippery, oily and weirdly sweet. But the fish sure was good, and the mussels were also delicious, like the dessert (creme brulee) we shared afterward. City Grill’s a find, for sure.

Unfortunately, we had to drive all the way across town to get there. What is the deal with the Monday night conspiracy, Montgomery?

We understand that many places are open on Saturdays and want to have a two day weekend for staff. But this doesn’t seem to bother restaurants in other cities. You just rotate staff. That seems like a reasonable solution. Or maybe some people want to work 7 days a week. Kind of like people enjoy eating 7 days a week.

Isn’t this a gaping hole in the market? Won’t some enterprising restaurant owner step up and say, “People of Montgomery! Feast at my table for a reasonable cost on a Monday night!”

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6 responses to “Things that are closed on Mondays

  1. It’s not just Montgomery, a lot of places are closed here in Nashville on Monday. I think Mondays are traditionally slow and the managers need a night off.

  2. But isn’t it possible that the slowness is a chicken and egg thing? People don’t go out to eat because everything’s closed. And everything’s closed because people don’t go out to eat. And as for managers needing a night off, one would think that the profits from being the only place open on a Monday would justify stretching the schedules of a few folks. I’m no HR expert, but one would think that the market would have evened out on this one and that a few places would say that there is money to be made by cornering the market on Mondays.

  3. as far as the glut of closed restauranters on mondays, i have nothing of import to add. i just couldn’t agree more. however, i do find fault with your opinion of east china. since i don’t know your specific complaint, it would hard to address your negative comments. i’ve never found anything really great or horrible about it. living out east does make it more accessible for me. i understand you wouldn’t go out of your way to eat there.

  4. Maybe the Monday conspiracy is trickling from Europe. Nothing is open on Mondays there! Montgomery is not exactly what I’d call “European” though..ha ha.
    We did not care for City Grill. It was fine, but not amazing. It smelled funny when we were there. Perhaps we were there on a bad night?
    As for Ham & High…apps and wine on the patio – great! Entrees – bleh. We really liked Michaels Table for brunch (I had a smoked salmon dish), but haven’t tried dinner yet.
    Went to Chophouse for our anniversary and loved it! Still need to try Garrets and Olive Room.
    Just in case you were wondering about our restaurant experiences. I know you were! 🙂

  5. Agreed. Restaurants being closed on Mondays is a bummer.

  6. Wishbone Cafe and Sushi Cafe are two awesome places that are open on Monday’s! In fact, Monday is the best day to go to Wishbone because you know they’ll still have their blue plate special (and they serve some fish dishes). Sushi Cafe is open everyday but Sunday.

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