Over the course of the year, you meet so many wonderful people. Here are some of the ones we met in 2018... Part One:
* While driving around Southern California, we spent a night in Delano, simply because there was a Hyatt next to the highway. Waking up the next morning, I started doing research for a good breakfast place nearby. It turns out there was a Filipino bakery just down the street and it gets rave reviews. We were on our way!
Not only were the breads, cookies and other assorted snacks at Fil Bake Shop
excellent (according to Mariton) but the people could not have been nicer. The national language is The Philippines is Tagalog, which my wife speaks perfectly fine, but she grew up speaking Visaya. All the ladies here were from nearby islands as Mariton and also spoke Visaya, which gave them an instant connection. From that moment on, we were treated as special guests. They even sent over a whole tray of goodies for us to try.
We ended up buying around $40.00 worth of stuff to snack on while driving around the rest of the trip.
* You want to see the face of bbq? Here it is:
This is Mr. Williams of Williams' BBQ
in West Memphis, AR. No doubt he has a first name but everyone, employees and customers alike, called him Mr. Williams. Honestly, he looked kind of mean, but my wife asked to take his photo and he was happy to pose. Who is going to say no to a pretty girl? Actually, he turned out to be a really nice guy, who was paying attention to every detail of what was going on in his bbq shop.
* Our hotel in Virginia Beach was ideally situated just a few blocks away from the wonderful Doc Taylor's
. Mariton decided sleeping was more important than breakfast so I made the walk on my own. They sat me at the counter where I could watch the cooks at work on the grill. It was obvious an experienced cook was breaking in a new employee
and the constant banter back and forth would have been worth the visit even if the food wasn't so good. My favorite line: "Keep those hashbrowns flowing like Kentucky bourbon, man!"
* Not sure why I get so much glee taking photos of the concretes being held upside down at Ted Drewes
, but I really do. Sometimes they are shy, but doing the cup flip is a mandatory part of working at this great custard stand. During a weekend in St. Louis, we hit Ted Drewes
* Big Daddy's Dish
is a soul food restaurant conveniently located near the airport in Atlanta and we usually finish our trips to the area with a stop here. The service is cafeteria style and the amount of eye catching food to choose from can be almost overwhelming. At the end of the line is Big Daddy himself to greet you.
Cats just don't come any cooler than Big Daddy!
* Back at the previously mentioned Burger Bar
in Cleburne, Texas, the place is so small that the employees can't help being but just a few feet away from you the entire time you are here. If they aren't friendly, considering all burgers are made to order which takes time, it could be awkward. Fortunately, the young lady working that day was a delight. She told us about the history of the place, the fact that you can go use the bathroom at the plumbing supply store down the block and gave us some good dining recommendations in nearby Fort Worth. And when our burger was done,
she was proud to pose.
* While in Chicago, we met someone who called himself the Goodwill Ambassador for the Famous Chicago Pie Triangle.
Is this actually a paying position? We never did catch his name, but we certainly appreciated his enthusiasm for the subject.
* We were not expecting to love Lithuanian Bakery
, best known for their Napoleon tortes, as much as we did and one of the reasons was because of this nice young man,
who was part of the family that owns the place. His grandfather started the business in 1963. Here he is holding a loaf of their sourdough rye. He told us, "The sourdough rye started the business, the Napoleon torte keeps us in business!"
* We love pit beef sandwiches around Baltimore and our favorite place is Pioneer Pit Beef
. Great sandwiches and really friendly people, too. And as a bonus, as they are slicing your meat for the sandwiches, they always give you free samples. Here is one of the employees
handing Cousin Johnny some heavenly, thinly sliced turkey.
* While reading the Roadfood review for Pink Dipper
, an ice cream parlor in North Augusta, SC, we realized the young lady making our desserts was the same one pictured in the review. We showed her the photo from the review, which she hadn't seen before. She was more than happy to pose for me
with the Moon Pie hot fudge sundae she just made for me. How good does that sound?
* Which waitress you get can make such a big difference in what kind of experience you have at a restaurant. We have eaten at Red Iguana
in Salt Lake City several times before and loved it. During a September visit, Lydia
was our server and she has been here for over 30 years. Not only is she a naturally sweet lady, she made several helpful suggestions that greatly enhanced our meals. We wish Lydia could wait on us everywhere we go!
* If you choose to dine at Alcenia's
, and you definitely should, you are going to get hug from owner B.J. Chester-Tamayo. That's all there is to it. After our hugs on the way out the door, the only way she would pose for photos is if we posed with her.
No problem there for my wife.
Part two of this post will have to wait until we return from our weekend trip to Birmingham.
post edited by buffetbuster - 2019/01/11 09:54:02