2016 Restaurant of the Year
We sit down with Matt the owner of Burrito Grill ''BG'' making some of the most delicious food in Oklahoma, Burrito Grill recently was announced as the winner of the 2016 Made In Oklahoma Restaurant of the Year!
How did Burrito Grill get its start and what brought you to now?
It started with an early passion for cooking, I cooked a whole meal for my family when I was around 7 years old and it was terrible. It was a steak dinner with canned corn with crappy mashed potatoes and the steak was like leather but I really enjoyed feeding my family. It kind of grew from there. I went to Johnson and Wales Culinary School. when I was living in Miami beach in Florida. My wife and I were living down there and we the ability to have time to go culinary school. I kind of developed the science behind of why food does what it does and what you can do with it, I also learned how to make it business marketable.
What brought you to Blanchard?
Well we moved back in 2002 and we started looking for a place, I liked the proximity to Norman, Oklahoma City but I wanted a few acres for my kids to run around and play on when we would have them.
Can you tell me the process of how you came up with the idea of what a Burrito Grill burrito was going to be? how you chose your ingredients and how you got involved with MIO?
Really the style is simple, it's a blend of fresh ingredients and authentic Mexican flavors only, and not so much Texmex flavors. We jumped in with both feet and we had never owned a restaurant before. I waited tables a bit and bartended but no restaurant management experience. It was the first 2-3 years that everything started taking shape. We had big burritos and quesadillas but with the ingredients starting to becoming more refined, We started looking into less of buying ingredients out of state and buying more ingredients that were made in Oklahoma or grown from farmers down the street. Like Shawnee Mills they mill their flour right there. So that's why we are the way we are now with the fresh ingredients and great flavors.
Tell us how being a part of the community has really influenced your business and how you helped motivate people to vote for you as Made in Oklahoma's Restaurant of the Year.
Really it started all before we even had a Facebook page, You know the one thing we’ve always done is we wanted to provide the best possible service for our customers and being involved with the community, hiring local people as well as giving to the toy drive around christmas time and developing relationships with our customers.
BG: You know, we've been here ever since we opened. We didn’t do multiple locations we just wanted this one. One thing we love to pride ourselves in is we know just about all of the people that walk through that door and like us on Facebook. We know our customers orders. We seep the same employees for years so i think that's what allowed us to beat the bigger companies. Our customers jumped on Facebook and voted and really rallied together for us. We look at it as we're not just feeding our customers, were nourishing them. It's more than just a business transaction.
The certification were really proud of is our Certified Healthy Restaurant which we got for our use of whole grain in our food as well as just having all of the healthy veggies and ingredients in our food. MIO gave us one thousand dollars to give to a local food band, but we wanted to take it one step further. we took another one thousand dollars and gave it to our employees. We let them keep half of it and the other half we encouraged them to go out and give away in our community, help pay for someone’s gas, buy someone's groceries, or help someone in need with bills. We were really excited to hear back from our employees of the stories from the weekend. it just reminds us, it's more than just a business transaction, it's a feeding your family.