Dining at Sullivan Hardware’s In-House Restaurant

Dishes of food on a table.
The spread at Sully’s Grill.

THE IDEA OF hardware-store food may conjure images of free bags of popcorn while you browse or novelty candies next to the batteries at the counter. But when that store is the sprawling, well-stocked Sullivan Hardware and Garden on Keystone Avenue, and the chef is former Festiva kitchen chief Rachel Hoover, your notions of where to stop for a midday meal may require a renovation. Housed in an airy greenhouse space with a pergola-covered patio that’s also host to cooking classes, wine dinners, and “Grilling in the Garden” events featuring grills and smokers for sale at the store, Sully’s Grill is a beautifully-appointed workshop where Hoover can tinker with upgrades on brunch and lunch favorites. Her “nostalgia bites” are especially fresh, such as a hearty, garlicky bean dip that’s enriched with parmesan and showered with a mélange of tangy marinated tomatoes. Smoked meats take center stage in sandwiches but with surprising embellishments like pickled zucchini and black-garlic aioli on tender smoked chicken or a bright giardiniera and arugula on a thick wedge of brisket with a welcome chew. Do-it-yourselfers who brunch will want to drop in on weekends for a hearty breakfast sandwich slathered with an intriguing savory apricot jam or pancakes with toppings Hoover hammers out each week. And if you like the table and chairs where you’re sitting, they’re likely on stock in the store, too. 6955 N. Keystone Ave., 317-255-9230