In this Digital Age, it’s hard to fathom a business without some hook on social media or even a web page.
But if you are a fan of food cooked on an outdoor grill, then the only way, and the best way, to experience the foodie offerings of Grills Gone Wild is in person.
Equipped with about 8 feet worth of grill and set up in front of Hair of the Dog English Pub on North Palm Canyon Drive, Grills Gone Wild’s owners Jack and Crissy Bradley have been a fixture at the Palm Springs VillageFest on Thursday nights for the better part of 12 years. Their team serves up a combination of delicious fresh food and charming entertainment by cooking live before customers lining the street.
That street presence wil come in handy on New Year's Eve when Grills Gone Wild will be one of the vendors that will dish up delicacies for the crowd at the 2016 New Year’s Eve Countdown and Outdoor Block Party hosted by Spa Resort Casino in downtown Palm Springs.
The event will feature food and merchandising vendors, kids activities, and a multi-media countdown that is free to the public. Tickets are also available for purchase to attend a concert by famed rock band Starship featuring Mickey Thomas.
While Grills Gone Wild may add something special like a tri-tip sandwich to the New Year’s Eve menu, Jack Bradley is pretty sure that they will simply keep serving up their fan favorites. “It’s what we do and what we are known for," he says.
Bradley, a retired vending businessman, says he loves the desert and first started coming to the desert in 1947. After a divorce, he started Grills Gone Wild because, as he relates, “I wanted to provide something hard to find. I’m somebody who cares about fresh food and providing the best.”
He special orders his fresh meats and buys his bakery goods locally. Grills Gone Wild has generated such a reputation for their fabulous fare that they are in high demand for private parties and special events.
Known primarily for their half-pound hamburgers and cheeseburgers, fans flocking from all over the world will also find tasty take-aways such a Bratwurst, Italian sausage, and Pulled Pork. The team also prepares a grilled onion with root beer — a Grills Gone Wild’s version of a Maui Onion. According to Jack Bradley, it’s so popular that the cooks go through 50 pounds of onions in a week.
Grills Gone Wild has no website and uses simple business cards as a method of contact. Bradley attributes the company’s success to good old-fashioned buzz. “It’s more or less word of mouth." he says. "People know us. They remember us and they keep coming back. We have fun doing what we are doing and this keeps us busy. We have a great time and we try to give people the best food. It’s an old school thing. Give customers the best.”
2016 New Year’s Eve Countdown and Outdoor Block Party, 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. at Spa Resort Casino, 401 E. Amado Road, Palm Springs, 760-883-1000; www.sparesortcasino.com.