“Local is at the heart of all we do here at The Rail, and we’re so proud of that,” owner Mike Mariola shared. We don’t think any of us could have said it better! Six years ago today, we opened the very first Rail location in Akron, Ohio, just outside Summit Mall, and we’re so excited to celebrate six years of serving up the best local food, milkshakes and beers around.
The Rail was inspired by the success of another Mike Mariola Restaurant, still thriving in his hometown of Wooster, Ohio. The success of The City Square Steakhouse’s bar menu led Mike to craft a more casual, sit-down restaurant specializing in all-Ohio burgers, beers and milkshakes, which you know as The Rail.
Over the next five years, The Rail became much more than a burger bar, now with four locations in Akron, Canton, North Olmsted and Strongsville, and plans slated for Columbus in 2018. The Mike Mariola Restaurants team has also taken on a new venture with Ohio Beer Garden, located next door to The Rail – North Olmsted, with a focus on local brewing camaraderie.
While we continue to grow, we also continue to be locally owned and fully committed to serving the best-tasting, freshest local offerings to our customers. Although The Rail is best known for our gourmet burgers, we’ve been listening to our guests’ feedback and working hard to broaden our menu offerings beyond burgers, to include more fresh and delicious options for local proteins, sandwiches, salads, appetizers and healthier side options.
When asked, Mike said the three things that keeps The Rail unique are “fresh, local food, refreshing beverages for the whole family, and his own passion for serving the best that our great state has to offer.” We are not only committed to creating the best burger and milkshake (or beer) combinations, but we also have knowledgeable team members who are proud of what they serve. This is evident by the fact that several of them who started with us way back in 2011 are still with us today, including Laura McKinney, Diana Magno, Matthew Fricke, Steven Laungrath and Josh Markey, all still in Akron, and Bobby Borelle, our very own “Four Storesman,” having worked at every Rail location, leading to his current position as North Olmsted’s Kitchen Manager. When people are proud of what they’re doing, they tend to stick around, and we’re so glad to have our incredible staff of RAILavores old and new here to celebrate with us.
Looking back on the last six years, it’s amazing to see how far we’ve come. We certainly couldn’t have made it to where we are today without our hard-working team and loyal customers, and we look forward to sharing the exciting journey ahead with you!