Wes Hennings never met a meal he walked away from and is an opinionated eater! Each Thursday, he shares the results of a business lunch he’s had with a colleague as a way to advise our business community on the good, bad, and the tasty across the CSRA. He doesn’t let ABD or the restaurant know where he is going and his opinions are his own. He grades the restaurants he visits on a 1-5 scale with “5” being outstanding. We call this our “Real Business Lunch Review”.
Food Quality: 5
Business Meeting: 5
Average Score: 4.25 out of 5
As a rule, I feel like there are good places to go for a good time, and good places to go for good food. The Vin diagram of the two does not have a large intersection. Bowling Alleys will generally serve you frozen fries and a warmed-over burger for example. Chuck E. Cheese does not set the standard for gourmet pizza. But this week, I may have found one of the few places where food and fun coexist on almost the same plane – and it couldn’t have been better timing.
With the eyes of the world focused on Augusta next week for the world’s premiere golf tournament, I figured it would be fun to grab a friend and head to the next best thing to Augusta National – Topgolf. (Please note sarcasm) Seriously, Topgolf is a good time, and I wanted to see how I could fare eating lunch, while I hopelessly hit a few balls toward multi-colored flags.
I will admit that I didn’t like the idea of Augusta’s Topgolf from the time they teed it up several years ago. It’s supposed to have multiple levels of driving ranges, thus the name TOP golf, and my wife’s nickname for our location, bottom golf. But to be fair, I like the idea of it, and will never turn down some fun entertainment in our thriving metropolis, so I gave it a mulligan.
To my surprise, the lunch I encountered would stand up to most standalone eateries in town. Of course, the price is going to be higher than what I would normally pay for such entrees at a typical restaurant, but the atmosphere and competitive fun took me out of any sticker shock. I had a plate of nachos and a drink for around $15 bucks, and my golfing companion had a burger, fries, and drink for a similar price. And upon biting into both plates, we both displayed a look of surprise at the abundance of taste and quality.
I would say that my nachos probably could have used a bit more cheese, but they made up for it with an abundance of steak. And my companion had nary a word of complaint about the burger. Of course, he could have been too focused on how badly he lost to me at golf.
And what says business lunch more than a round of golf? While I wouldn’t suggest it for a suit-and-tie meeting, I feel like this type of outing would be great to discuss details of almost any deal in a casual and fun environment. Plus, you can rent the bay for just an hour, which was also plenty of time to order, get your food, and pay your check.
The one shanked ball of this experience would be the service. We waited for a text to tell us that our golfing spot was available, and it never came. Plus, our server was fine, but did not come around that often. So, service from start to finish was not a high point, but it did the job.
While I bet you won’t be able to get in easily in the next 10 days or so, when the crowds have gone home and you find yourself missing the golf craziness, head on over to Topgolf. I think you’ll find the food is as good as the fun. And this rare and winning combo is why Topgolf lives on the top of my list.
437 Topgolf Way