By Griffin Nelson
Photography by John Antaki

Ramiro Galvin, the owner of Munchies Lab, loves doing things differently and has surrounded himself with people who are similarly creative in the kitchen. The Mexican-born chef has a cultivated background, having lived on the West Coast as a kid before moving to Augusta in his teens. With professional experience in the restaurant industry, Galvin opened El Rey with his family six years ago.

The popular Mexican restaurant provided Galvin with the confidence and resources to recently create something new, unlike anything Augusta has experienced. “I want people to think ‘I can’t compare this to any other place because there is no other place like it,’” he explains. Munchies Lab is managing to do just that. Backed by his family and surrounded by a creative kitchen staff, Galvin encourages his employees to think outside the box. 

The new restaurant has a unique take on the classic, everyday favorites. It’s comfort food with a twist, featuring vibes straight out of Southern California. Why have pizza when you could have Pizza Birria? Or a regular baked potato when you could choose The Mexican with steak strips, onions, avocado, cheese and cilantro? You don’t have to decide between sushi and burritos when there are options like the Flaming Roll Sushi-Rito with fried chicken, cream cheese, buffalo ranch and Hot Cheetos dust.

The menu changes about once a month. The ever-evolving options always include a “Chef’s Choice” for those who are feeling brave, which can be ordered in “Not Too Hungry” (regular) and “I’m Starving” (extra large) sizes. The “Chef’s Choice” option gives the kitchen free rein to create something new, often becoming a future regular menu item.

Whether you decide to order a huge Munchies Box stuffed with traditional wings and fries to fill a crowd or give the staff full creative license to create a new dish, your food horizons will expand to new heights at Munchies Lab . You can experience the Instagram-worthy food in person at 1022 Walton Way, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday, or use the DoorDash app for local delivery. 

Some of Munchies Lab’s delicious bites!

Appears in the February/March issue of Augusta Magazine. 

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