For the past 35 years, Harold “Sam” Baker and his wife, Melanie, have been business owners and active members of the Worthington community. In July, they opened Harold’s American Grille, adding the title of restauranteer to their resumes. Located on High Street in the heart of Downtown Worthington, Harold’s American Grille introduces an upscale yet casual dining experience to an already vibrant restaurant scene. Harold’s American Grille may be the Baker’s first restaurant, but it's not their only business venture. Sam runs Baker & Associates, an architecture firm, located above the restaurant, that specializes in retail and commercial design. “Having helped design dozens of restaurants over the years, I felt confident about our vision for Harold’s American Grille,” Baker said. “We set out to create a local business that would contribute to the urban fabric of Downtown Worthington, both in its appearance and in the clientele it caters to.”
To fill the dual role of executive chef and general manager, the Bakers turned to Steve Muntean, who also helped create an American style menu full of classic dishes and local ingredients. “We are huge supporters of the Worthington Farmers Market,” said Baker. “Our chef visits the market each week and hand selects a variety of local items, including meats, cheeses, eggs and honey.”
On the Menu
When asked about his favorite item on the menu, Baker is quick to share his fondness for Harold’s Fish Sliders. He's an Ohio Valley native who grew up on the famous fish sandwiches at Coleman’s Fish Market (in Wheeling, West Virginia), which he purchased as a kid for a quarter. When Gourmet Magazine declared it “America’s best fish sandwich” in 2001, Baker decided that if he ever owned a restaurant, the menu would include his own version of the famous sandwich.
It’s safe to say that while the delicious fare, including menu items such as Ohio Bison Meatloaf and Lobster Grilled Cheese, will lure you in, the family-friendly atmosphere, house-made desserts and extensive lineup of wine, beer and spirits will keep you coming back.
A wine connoisseur at heart, Baker tasted more than 200 bottles of wine before deciding on the final list. Today restaurant patrons can purchase wine at a reduced rate, store it in wine lockers, and pay a corkage fee when they come into the restaurant to dine, an idea Baker implemented after experiencing it firsthand at a restaurant in Waco, Texas.
Baker is a strong proponent of synergy, and he believes that adding competition to Worthington’s bustling dining scene will only contribute to everyone’s success. “We are so thankful for the warm welcome we have received so far, both from people who frequent Harold’s and from our neighboring restaurants, and we look forward to serving this community for years to come," he said.
About Harold's American Grille
Harold’s American Grille is located at 673 High Street in Worthington, Ohio. The restaurant is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner and for brunch on Saturdays (8 a.m. to 2 p.m.) and Sundays (9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) To learn more, visit the website and like their Facebook page.
Convention & Visitors Bureau of Worthington
Worthington, Ohio, offers a variety of activities, attractions, specialty shops and dining options for visitors of all ages and interests. The Convention & Visitors Bureau of Worthington is your resource for all the latest information, including the event calendar at VisitWorthingtonOhio.com. You can also follow us on Facebook at Visit Worthington Ohio