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Grill menu keeps it fresh

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash.-- --

Laughter pierced the halls of The Club at McChord Field as people packed into the newly-reopened McChord Grill and Bar to enjoy the menu of food and the casual environment Jan. 19.

“I’m very excited about opening and to highlight our new concept of more healthy, more gourmet and cook to fresh food,” said Dorte West, the club’s business manager. “The entire place has been elevated, and it’s going to be a very nice place.”

The restaurant reopened its doors with a ribbon cutting ceremony after more than a year and $500,000 in renovations. The event featured a variety of service members, including a large contingent from the Air Force, that broke in the new bar with a “Thirsty Thursday” special on drinks and food.

 An assortment of new healthy food options, including a salad, will be a change for returning customers. The McChord Grill and Bar is also equipped with new tables, chairs, booths and a more open layout with more windows to allow natural light in the dining area.

“We have a variety of sandwiches, such as a Cuban, Mediterranean, a wide-range of burgers and we also have chili and different soups,” West said. “We want to become one of the many places around McChord that people consider for lunch.”

One of the features West is most excited for is the revamped pub, which now features an expansive bar, four mounted televisions and open space for hanging out or playing darts. The hope is to make the bar area a more well-known place to come after work and relax. The officer’s dining room has also received a facelift and is now the Rainier Room — a ballroom for private events.

For many, the new club is a nice break from the continuity of other popular lunch locations around Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

“Not that there is anything wrong with the establishments off base, but it’s kind of our duty to support places like this on (base),” said Master Sgt. James Niblock of the 627th Logistics Readiness Squadron, 627th Air Base Group. “I really like the atmosphere here.”

One of the driving factors behind the remodel is the hope to draw in larger crowds, West said. Prior to the remodel, business was lagging and she is hoping that the new layout draws new patrons. That sentiment was echoed by Niblock who thinks people to need support the club or else they might not have the chance.

“I just hope that people around base make sure to appreciate a place like this,” he said. “If you don’t use it, you lose it. That is what I want to (emphasize) to my Airmen; if you don’t use the benefits on base then they go bye-bye.”