Pay it Forward – Grillagan’s Island

I am happy to present to you our thirteenth local business spotlighted in the Pay it Forward feature – Grillagan’s Island.

Our recent Lake County business featured was Baylee Grove, owner of Rock N’ Rolled Ice Cream, who chose to Pay it Forward to Nicole & Nick Gentry, owners of Grillagan’s Island.

The catch is that I will not choose the next business to interview, but the current spotlighted business will choose who I will interview next. Local businesses will Pay it Forward.

Grillagan’s Island is a locally owned and operated custom fast-serve restaurant specializing in a variety of grilled cheese sandwiches, fresh burgers, grilled chicken sandwiches, homemade soups, and salads with gluten-free and vegan options available.

They take pride in offering local, high-quality, fresh ingredients. All of their side orders are also made fresh daily, including potato salad, coleslaw, and macaroni salad. They offer a wide variety of beverages. You know where to satisfy your food cravings! Grillagan’s Island is located in Lucerne and they provide your party and catering needs as well.

1. Why did you decide to start your own business?

It has been a lifetime dream of mine to open a diner on a highway. We entered a Lake County competition called Hands Up Lake County in 2021, and although we didn’t win that year, our business idea took off. My husband Nick came up with the name, and we ran with it.

2. What advice would you give to someone just starting their own business?

Well, I would tell them to research everything, from location to costs. Everything. I would also say go for it! Dreams do come true.

3. What routines do you follow each day?

I have routines for everything. In the morning, I go in early and make soup, macaroni & cheese, and salads. I have to make sure everything is prepared and ready to serve daily. We have to put all our signage out and make sure our lobby is ready for our awesome customers. These are just a few of my daily routines. On Mondays, we go shopping for the restaurant.

4. Where do you see your business in five years? Ten?

We hope to see our restaurant still standing. Things are truly rough these days, with the cost of food skyrocketing, actually the cost of everything. It is different than it was even a year ago.

5. How did you market your business when it was brand new?

We started with Facebook only. We used that for a while. Then we learned more about different platforms such as Instagram and TikTok. We also got our new website up and running – it is www.grillagansisland.com

6. If you could spend the day with anyone (living or who has passed on), who would it be and why?

Jesus Christ! Very simple answer for me and my husband.

Nicole & Nick Gentry – Owners of Grillagan’s Island

6232 East Highway 20

Lucerne, CA  95458

Tuesday-Saturday 11:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. (Normal Hours)

Added Hours Sunday & Monday 12 noon-6:00 p.m. (Testing these hours)

Facebook @Grillagansisland

Instagram @Grillagansisland

TikTok @Grillagansisland




Nicole & Nick would like to Pay it Forward to Sister’s Coffeehouse in Clearlake.

Stay tuned for Sister’s Coffeehouse!

Lori Armstrong

Lori began her career in the legal field, leaving that position to pursue full-time writing endeavors. Being a criminal court reporter for the Record-Bee, she balances the chaos in her brain by writing children's books and reflective pieces. When time allows, she publishes books for Amazon.

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