Blue Rock Bar & Grill finishes expansion, unveils new indoor-outdoor spaces

March 7, 2019

The restaurant at the Sanford Sports Complex will be virtually unrecognizable to most visiting it again now that it has reopened as Blue Rock Bar & Grill.

It originally was Beef ‘O’ Brady’s and then became Will’s Training Table.

The new Blue Rock is a significantly expanded space, with multiple dining areas and bars, and two patios that will open once the weather allows.

“I think it came together amazingly well,” said Julie Coleman, Sanford Sports Complex food and beverage director.

“It’s really the unique destination I imagined it to be when they told me about it.”

Visitors are greeted by a new entryway featuring a mounted brown bear that then branches off in two directions.

On one side is The Lodge, a newly constructed dining and bar space meant to be a little less casual than the rest of the building – but still a place to visit without dressing up.

“It’s a South Dakota feel, bringing the west to the east,” Coleman said. “You can come dressed up or in jeans. It’s that fun middle of the road. I see a lot of rehearsal dinners, bachelor and bachelorette parties.”

The Lodge is open to the public after 5 p.m. and for events during business hours.

Two other spaces, the Sports Bar and the Tailgate, are on the opposite side of the first floor. The sports bar is the area that’s most reminiscent of the former restaurant, but it has been updated and now leads to the Tailgate, an enclosed space with garage doors that will open to a patio.

That area is open to the public for lunch and dinner. Other fun touches include games such as Connect Four and Jenga.

“It’s already been used extremely well, lots of hockey and basketball teams and event and group functions,” Coleman said. “It’s been very warm (in the Tailgate area) even though it’s blowing and cold outside.”

Upstairs is an entirely new area, the Upper Deck, which features another space enclosed by garage doors with a bar and additional seating.

Other fun features: The barstools each have spaces to plug in electronics, and the walls are covered in historic South Dakota sports photos.

That space also leads to a rooftop patio that will open once the weather allows.

“There’s lounge seating in each corner of both patios, so it’s a comfortable place to hang out and enjoy the sun and relax,” Coleman said.

The same menu is used throughout Blue Rock. It has been refined since the rebranding and includes appetizers, salads, wraps, burgers, sandwiches, pizza and entrees such as a New York strip, salmon, chicken fettuccine, St. Louis pork ribs, a buffalo ribeye and a venison rack.

“Our burgers are still our No. 1 seller. They’re fresh and never frozen. And our wings are char-baked, and they’re No. 2, which is typical for a sports bar,” Coleman said.

Other customer favorites include a cheeseburger salad and the Black Rock Pizza, which includes alfredo sauce, South Dakota pheasant sausage, shoulder bacon, fontina cheese, heirloom tomatoes and balsamic glaze.

There’s even a signature label Blue Rock Cabernet on the wine list and other little surprises throughout the dining experience.

“We’ve tried to put in some subtle ‘wow’ factors that you won’t see everywhere else,” Coleman said.

Like the Lodge, the Upper Deck primarily will be open after 5 p.m. except for events. Call 605-271-2500 for information on booking.

The restaurant is still hiring wait staff, hosts and hostesses and bartenders. Applicants are encouraged to apply in person.

Blue Rock’s hours are from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Blue Rock Bar & Grill finishes expansion, unveils new indoor-outdoor spaces

The restaurant at the Sanford Sports Complex will be virtually unrecognizable to most visiting it again now that it hass reopened as Blue Rock Bar & Grill.

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