They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I don’t know about that, but I do know that all it took was a photograph of one of Griffith Drive In’s cheeseburgers “all the way” that made me want to take a Saturday trip out to Griffith, Georgia. One of my Facebook friends who lives near this landmark in Georgia’s Henry County posted a picture of a cheeseburger that looked slightly squashed and absolutely mouthwatering. I knew I had to try one for myself. My husband Bill and I recently took a trip out to Griffin in hopes that the picture did the sandwich justice.
About Griffith’s Drive In
According to its official website, Griffith’s Drive In has been serving the Griffin community since 1975. Owned and operated by the Griffith family, this local joint has been successfully serving burgers, hot dogs, fried chicken, chili, and slaw to an ever growing crowd of appreciative Georgians. When Bill and I made the trip to Griffith’s, we could see that the place was well-loved and attended by the locals. Griffith’s Drive In is a Christian owned business. It’s closed on Sundays so that staff members can worship and spend time with their families.
After driving through the town of Griffin, a community just south of Atlanta, Bill and I spotted the restaurant on the left side of Memorial Drive. Pulling into the generously sized parking lot, I could see the place was set up for those who long for the days of drive ins. There were several places where customers could pull up under a shady roof and order their food to be eaten in the car, but on the hot day when we visited, most customers had opted to eat in the restaurant.
When Bill and I walked into the homestyle burger joint, we were welcomed by a friendly lady behind the cash register. After taking a minute to peruse the simple, but yummy looking menu, Bill and I both ordered simple cheeseburgers with two small sides of fries and drinks. I had a Diet Coke and Bill ordered the sweet tea, which is supposed to be a house specialty. Like many other fast food operations, Griffith’s gives customers cups and they’re free to refill them with fountain drinks as often as they want to during their visit.
While we waited for Griffith’s famous cook, Rodney Stroud, to prepare our burgers, we sat down at a simple table by a large window. Looking around, I could see the place had the air of a local favorite. NASCAR memorabilia decorated the walls as well as other homey touches. When a little boy with a broken arm walked in with his dad, I immediately knew they were regulars. The lady behind the counter struck up a chat with the gentleman as she prepared the “to go” orders they had called in ahead of time.
A Wurlitzer jukebox sat in the corner. Above it, a flat screen television was in operation, the sound turned off and closed captioning turned on.
I must admit to really enjoying the cheeseburger and fries I ordered at Griffith’s. According to Griffith Drive In’s Web site, the hamburger meat is purchased daily from a local supermarket. And yet, for some reason it didn’t taste like ordinary supermarket to me. Maybe it’s because I didn’t have to cook it. The only thing I didn’t like about the burger was its size. It was a little smaller than I was expecting. On the other hand, that’s not such a bad thing in this day of supersizing everything.
The French fries were crinkle cut and tasty. Again, we ordered small portions and there was definitely truth in advertising. And again, it’s not such a bad thing that the portions were small. Just be aware that you might want to size up if you have a big appetite. Parents may be happy to know that Griffith’s Drive In also has kids’ meals.
On the other hand, maybe it’s better if you don’t size up… After all, I understand that Griffith’s serves some killer desserts. The pound cake is apparently the stuff of local legend. If you don’t like pound cake, you can try the lemon or apple pie. Naturally, ice cream is also available, as are shakes and floats.
Griffith’s Drive In also serves breakfast.
I’m pleased to report that the ladies restroom was clean, well lit, and well stocked during our visit.
Would we visit again?
I wouldn’t hesitate to go back to Griffith’s Drive In if I ever have another occasion to go to Griffin, Georgia. The food is good; the service is friendly; and it appears to be a local institution. If I ever need inspiration to head out to Griffin, all I have to do is take one look at that picture of a Griffith’s Drive In cheeseburger “all the way” to summon up a reason to go to Griffin!
Griffith’s Drive In
1015 Memorial Drive
Griffin, GA 30223
Phone: (770) 227-1111
Fax: (770) 227-0407
Open Monday through Saturday, 6:00am – 9:00pm