Tri Tip Grill Doesn’t Tolerate Chewy Meat

If you’re paying under $10 for steak, you’d expect to get a not so tender piece here and there. But apparently Tri Tip Grill, the “best thing in [the] Rock Center” concourse, doesn’t operate like that. From Lunch’er “John”

Hey guys–

I normally don’t do anything like this but figured you might be interested since I remember reading a good review of the Tri Tip Grill in Rock Center about a month back (the reason I tried it in the first place, actually).

I work in the area and have gone a few times, just getting the usual thin-sliced sandwich, because after all who can resist a delicious steak sammich on fresh bread? Anyway, went this past Monday with a few friends and tried the Roadhouse Buck, which is thick-sliced with bleu cheese, fried onions, the whole deal. Looked awesome.

Only problem was, I got a super-tough piece of meat that was impossible to cut with a knife, let alone chew. Too lazy to bring it back but just not lazy enough to type for 30 seconds, I fired off an email saying just how sad it was to look at such a beautiful and sweet-smelling sandwich but not be able to eat it. I wasn’t even expecting a response back.

But instead I got this:


My name is Dave and I am the owner. I can’t tell you how awful this makes me feel. You definitely had one of the rare bad experiences at our store, and I want to make it up to you. Can I bring you lunch tomorrow to your office on us? Usually, if there is something bad like this going on with our meat we catch it and it never makes it out the door. I can promise that this is an extremely rare occurrence, and it will not happen again. If I can bring you lunch tomorrow, I can hopefully help to prove this to you.

We care deeply about our guests and want them to have the best possible experience. If you let me know where you are, I will gladly bring you a roadhouse buck and a couple of other goodies.

Thank you very much for writing to us, hearing about problems and the rarer negative experiences allows us to continue to improve to provide our guests with only the best experiences. Please accept our apologies!

Dave Kassling

So now the owner is delivering sandwiches for me and a few of my co-workers today. Pretty awesome customer service (to the point that I’m willing to shill on their behalf). -John

Tender, delicious, steak sandwiches… or your next lunch is free?! It’s like win win… until somebody lies for the free food, and they stop responding to their emails.

Tri Tip Grill May Be The Best Thing in Rock Center


  • I am very embarrassed to ask but where in Rock center is it in exactly? i didn’t know there was a food concourse in rock center until today..O_O
    is there an official address so i can do the google map?

  • wow, not bad. actually, chipotle used to do the same thing, if they got our order wrong. well, you would have to go to them to get it, but you’d get a free lunch!

  • mkim- not sure how familiar you are with the concourse, but if you’re at the seating area near the rink, facing starbucks, it splits into 2 hallways. go to the right, and its like the first or second establishment on your right. if you go during lunchtime, you’ll recognize it by the line out the door. its between Lenny’s and Cucina, i believe, and across from Yummy Sushi.

  • Darn shilly. But VERY awesome of the owner to give your office a free lunch. Now getting a tough piece of meat kinda sounds like winning the lunch lotto for your co-workers. :P

    It’s near the Manchu Wok in the concourse. I been once not too long ago. I enjoyed the Big Buck and their onion strings are great!

  • Holy crap. This was posted at 1:40pm…

    At around noon I decided I was going here today, not having seen this post (I still haven’t read it!). I just finished my tri-tip sandwich and it was pretty damn awesome. Though my tri-tip was sliced thin so there really wasn’t a choice for it to be “chewy”. I had the meal so it was a full-size sandwich with the roadhouse onions. The sandwich was awesomely smokey, tender, and juicy (even though cooked to medium). A sandwich of this size would be more from anywhere else. The roadhouse onions were great – not too salty and not necessarily greasy to the touch, but I’m sure it was a grease-laden calorie bomb (especially considering the amount you get for the “meal” side).

    The “meal” option is a bit over the ML limit, but for the amount of food you get, definitely worth it.

  • I literally give up. You all can have the word “shill” no matter how you decide to use it. I guess this word lost its way the way the whole “figuratively”/”literally” battle was lost as well.

    p.s. shill doesn’t mean to promote! it means to deceive!

    • User has not uploaded an avatar

      No, a shill promotes in a deceptive way. It’s actually sort of both, if you can accept that. But this is what I love about Midtown Lunch. It’s not even about the food anymore. It’s about arrogant douchebags who decide to re-define a word, and then get all arrogant and douchebaggy when someone continues to use the actual meaning, not the one they invented.

  • I’d say shill = ‘promote while posing as a customer’.

    In any case, even if one simply takes ‘shill’ to mean ‘promote’ and there are then good shills (honest ‘hey this place is good’ comments) and bad shills (‘hey TriTip Grill is the best, and you should eat here every day) writen by a poser – I’d say that by such a definition this piece involves a ‘good shill’. Or at least it appears to be, to my eye.

    • Go ahead and say that. If misusing a word is your “thing”, then more power to you! :)

      • Adam is right about the def.

      • I dunno Mamacita. It certainly involves deception — no doubt about it, agreed 100% – but in my experience has also always involved promotion as well. The definition as bears this out.

        I dont mean to start (or add fire to) an argument here – rather, just explaining what I have always taken the word to mean, and in every case I have seen on this and other food-related websites, the shill-er is both promoting AND deceiving (posing as other a person with a personal stake in the business being promoted)

      • I also don’t think Luncher John is a shiller by any definition presented herein.

  • On a related note – and I hope a few entrepenuers open Midtown eateries read this comment – based on my reading of the comments on this website the past couple of years, I really believe that those who might be tempted to shill their business would be much better served simply adding a comment which is honest and inviting – “hey, I’m Joe Smith, I just opened Smith Bistro, I think we have some reasonably priced food that you’ll really like, and here’s a link to our menu, please come try us out and let me know what you think” – I think you guys would be far more prone to give such a place a tryout than those who go the ‘bad shill’ route.

  • I ate there yesterday. Got there around 11:45 and there was already 10 people on line ahead of me, with another 15 or so people holding the dreaded flashy beepers waiting for their food. I nearly walked away, but decided to give it a go anyway. Definitely glad I did. A phenomenal sandwich indeed, and they worked VERY quickly. The beef is great: nice charry outside- smoky, juicy meat inside. And a soft, doughy roll, just like I like it. The fries were lame, but the sandwich is big enough that you don’t “need” a side. Great place.

  • Have to say, my shill detector did not go off on this one. The post made me feel better about mankind – E.T. style. I wonder what the “other goodies” were.

  • Agreed, this post is not a shill, the argument is more about the nature and def of shill… not related to this post.

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    I never complain about this sort of thing, but their sandwiches are WAY too salty.

  • 2nd pic looks like Gyneo’s nightmare

  • Anyone who likes anything is a shill.

    But seriously, good move on the owner’s part.

  • i had tri-tip for the first time last week, and while a bit salty i have to say it was truly an awesome sandwich, and the horseradish sauce did help with the saltiness.
    seriously, a really good sandwich.

  • Can I get a refund if the onions in no way resemble the ones in the movie?

  • I went on opening day with a couple coworkers and we universally agreed it was nasty. After a nice email like that, though, I’ll give it another shot.

    Also I now have my mom’s voice reverberating in my head: “You should have complained… The squeaky wheel gets the grease…” Shut up, mom :(

  • I love it. Been going at least once a week since it opened.

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    Had my first little buck today. Just happened to be nearby so I gave it a try. I was alone in the place at 11:50. That was good. Took the sandwich back to my office. A quick rewarm and it was gone too soon. Good taste, tender meat. Onions were good though a few more would have been nice. Gravy was also tasty. Nice and peppery. My only knock – for $7+ I could have eaten another EASILY.

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