Thirty years ago, Craig and Donna Common opened the Common Grill in Chelsea, bringing sophisticated casual dining to a town more used to pubs and diners.
At the time, Common thought the restaurant might draw patrons from a ten-mile radius, he recalled in a 2018 interview with Edible WOW magazine. The original menu included deep-dish pizza and barbecued ribs.
But after twelve years with the C.A. Muer organization, Common had a special flair with seafood. As he became more creative with his food, focusing on a pescatarian approach, the Common Grill’s fame grew. Locals and staffers at the nearby Chrysler Proving Ground were joined by diners from around the region drawn by his fragrant bread rolls, gazpacho, and all manner of fresh fish.
The menu changed regularly, and Common could often be seen strolling through the dining room in his white chef’s coat, stopping to chat with familiar faces and newcomers alike. Sadly, he won’t be doing so much longer. In mid-February, Common announced that the restaurant will close on March 13.
“It is with many mixed emotions that we announce the closing of The Common Grill. After an incredible journey over 30 years, Donna and I have decided to retire and move on to the next phase of our lives,” he posted on social media. The couple have listed the building for sale.
“Since our beginning, we have always wanted to have a restaurant that provided a great experience, with quality food and service, on a consistent level,” Common wrote. “We hope that we have accomplished what we believed was our number one priority.”