Chelsea, MI

The Common Grill in Chelsea Reopens to Thrilled Customers, Neighboring Businesses, and Employees

Tracy Stengel

The Common Grill has now been open two weeks — and customers, small businesses in Chelsea, and employees are thrilled.

Upon a visit this weekend, our server/bartender, exclaimed, “I am so happy to be back!” Colleen Ross was hired four years ago and loves her job. We were thrilled to see our favorite employee again. Her warm personality lit up the room. My husband and I were happy to see our favorite employee, adding a bit of normalcy to dining out. courtesy of author

We came in at 4:45 on Saturday, hopeful and wary. They had been closed all winter. Plus, we drove an hour. This was a place we loved. Upon entering, we saw the owner, Craig Common, and breathed a sigh of relief. I knew if he was there … he is always there … everything would be fabulous. And it was!

We sat at the bar, which they had spaced out safely for Covid with eight chairs to accommodate four couples. Our server, and all servers, wore a mask. We were asked to give our names and phone numbers to comply with contract tracing.

We haven’t been “out” in a long time, but the Common Grill is our personal favorite place to celebrate all the important celebrations, markers of our lives, and to celebrate each other. Tonight was a moment to celebrate my birthday which Covid made impossible.

I felt I had come full circle. My twenty-first birthday was celebrated there, my girlfriend and I had many luncheons, my family has rejoiced in one another’s achievements. Now, we were back, welcomed by Craig’s smiling eyes behind his mask. It was comforting.

I had my usual, the shrimp and lobster linguine accompanied by the seafood chowder. It may have been from nostalgia, but they never tasted better. My husband had the walleye and pear salad and was, as always, wowed.

Afterward, we strolled down Main Street, Chelsea and popped into the neighboring store of The Common Grill, Violet and Moss.

The salesperson had an easy sale. We spotted a vintage painting of ladies in bikinis and thought it would be a fun and colorful addition to our lakefront home. When I mentioned we had just come from The Common Grill, she nodded her head. “Yay! The Common Grill is back!” is our fun pic we bought from Violet and Moss. Photo courtesy of author .

There is no question The Common Grill gives Chelsea small businesses a boost. They are following Covid regulations and still offering a full menu of first-rate options. We can’t wait to go back! In the comments, please tell me what your favorite menu item are and what you love most about this gem in Chelsea!

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Tracy explores the world with a positive eye, an open heart, and a sprinkling of humor. Without laughter, she would be lost.

Onsted, MI

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