Throughout 2014, McPhee’s Grill Chef-Owner Ian McPhee and his wife June are celebrating 20 years of serving customers in their downtown Templeton restaurant. McPhee attributes his success in reaching this milestone anniversary to both the growth of the surrounding wine country, tourism and the loyalty of his local customers.
Loyal customers, fresh menu options
When the couple first opened their restaurant in 1994, there were about 20 wineries in the surrounding area; today, more than 250 dot the countryside. Tourists and locals alike have been loyal patrons and that loyalty, McPhee says, is a result of his commitment to the philosophy of “great food and great service.”
After operating Ian’s Restaurant in Cambria for 10 years, the McPhee’s opened McPhee’s Grill in Templeton. Family-owned and operated, the McPhee’s have employed all four of their children at the restaurant; two currently continue to work there.
“I have customers that came to me the first week that I opened my restaurant in Cambria in 1983, and that still come to my restaurant in Templeton on a regular basis to this day, ” McPhee said. “It’s an amazing thing – we love being supported by the community. It’s truly the most rewarding part of my job.”
The menu has maintained house favorites while seasonal, farm-fresh ingredients inspire a revolving selection of new items. House favorites include appetizers like the Ancho Duck & Cheese Quesadilla; entrées like the Rib Eye with jalapeño cheese mashed potatoes and goat cheese stuffed Poblano chile, or the Thick Cut Pork Chop. McPhee introduced his new wood-fired pizzas earlier this year.
The McPhee’s believe in giving back to their supportive community by regularly donating to non-profit organizations including the Boys & Girls Club of North County, the Templeton Education Foundation and the Templeton Library Foundation. In July, a spontaneous display of patriotism took place at McPhee’s Grill when 10 U.S. soldiers from the 368th Engineer Battalion of New England arrived for dinner. As they walked to their table, the entire dining room erupted in cheers and saluted the soldiers for at least five minutes. Three separate customers proceeded to pay for part of the group’s bill, and McPhee covered the balance.
“It was truly amazing to see this kind of support for our troops,” McPhee said. “I was proud of our community for the moving gesture, and happy to be able to follow suit and offer a token of my appreciation to these soldiers for their service to our country.”
For more information on McPhee’s Grill, including hours and menu, call (805) 434-3204 or visit mcpheesgrill.com.