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Sullivan's Pot Roast Brings Comfort Food to Lunch

The Lunch Box is a weekly feature of the Anderson Observer. The feature is not paid advertising, and the opinions and suggestions belong to the writer of each selection.

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

One of the highlights of my life is finding a good place for a tasty lunch. Each week The Lunch Box will highlight a local meal I have found to be a delicious and consistent and go-to choice. This is not a restaurant review, it is a “best of” what to eat for lunch in Anderson County. If you have suggestions for a great plate of food, email me at 

Today’s Lunch Box


Opening the Box

Main Course: Open-Face Pot Roast, Sullivan's Metropolitan Grill

Sullivan's Metropolitan Grill downtown, is well-known for their lunch menu, but a lot of folks seem to have overlooked one of the best lunch plates of comfort food you can find in Anderson, the open-face pot roast sandwich with hot brown gravy and melted mozzarella cheese on a toasted baguette.

Rich and meaty, it's easily the best roast beef served in town. The beef is piled high and tender, the well-seasoned gravy thick and filling, and I don't know who thought to top it with melted cheese, but they deserve a serious raise. And the bread, a toasted baguette, would be great with anything on top of it.

I've eaten this sandwich dozens of times, and introduced it to most of my family and friends. So far not a single person who has tried it has failed to order it again. Many find the sandwich too large for a single meal, and take half of it home for another meal. (It reheats very well).

If you like home cooking in your lunchbox, this sandwich is a wonder option.

Side Dishes

While I've found no disagreements about the greatness of the main dish, I have parted ways with those who've adpoted the sandwich as a favorite when it comes to the side dish.

Although it may sound odd to some, I always order Sullivan's french fries as my go-to compliment to the pot roast. (Ask for them extra crispy, for a bonus treat). The fries are fine eating, with just the right amount of salty goodness to match the sandwich.

If you choose to pass on the fries, then go with sweet potato chips and add cheese fondue dip on the side for 50 cents. These chips have a hit of sweetness and a great crunch. They are not as filling as the fries, so you might be able to finish the sandwich with these.  

Potato salad and pasta salad are also available, but they don't seem a good fit for the pot roast to me. Your palate may say otherwise.


A no brainer. Sullivan's fresh-brewed iced tea is in the thermos. As always, I go for a mix of about 75 unsweet/25 sweet, since, as those who know me will testify, I generally will refill my glass at least half a dozen times during a good lunch. The waitstaff at Sullivan's solves some of this dilemma by bringing me two filled glasses for quicker refills. If you are one of those people who insists on water, you'll save a couple of bucks.

Closing the Box

The cost of the open-face pot roast sandwich with one side is $10.99. Add $2.69 for iced tea (it's worth it).Carrot Cake And if you choose to take half your sandwich home, there are always a case full of Sullivan's renowned homemade desserts. My favorites? Cake: Carrot/tie with Coconut; Pie: Coconut Cream (not often available), the Key Lime is also very good; Cheesecake: Plain (which I recognize is a controversial choice).

Sullivan's Metropolitan Grill is open Monday-Friday for lunch. Find out more about them by clicking on the Luchbox Graphic above.

Bonus Lunchbox Note: Bill and Sabra Nickas started Sullivan's in an empty downtown Anderson 20 years ago. They have been extremely active and generous community citizens in Anderson County, and continue to support many local non-profits and charitable organizations.

In Next Week’s Lunch Box: A Reben Sandwhich You Have to Know How to Order (Guess where?)

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