Thursday, October 26, 2006

Take time to remember

This post is not about politics, snakes, or dogs. Its about a restaurant.

As first reported by KB, the Country Omelette burned down this morning. When I was a kid, a finicky kid, we'd have our occasional family breakfasts at the Country Omelette. If it was close enough to 11, I could get a hamburger. If not, pancakes. I would stack the jelly like most kids do, or I'd take a trip to the bathroom staring at all the white people (the most I'd ever see in any given week otherwise) and the large landscape photos of places in Europe used mostly to cover the walls than to advertise any particular place.

The Country Omelette was also where, after ordering a hamburger at 11am, I first heard the story of my parents first date. They met in Dallas. My dad, like many people loves breakfast, so he assumed my mom did too. He took her to what he says was one of the best places in Dallas for breakfast. They arrive at around 10am, and she orders...a hamburger.

The Country Omelette would probably be considered a dive if not for its huge windows in every booth. It had a bar, booths, and tables, a permanent salad bar with those mini-cereal boxes that seem only to exist in restaurants. It also had not changed since it opened in the late 1970s, hence it had brown shag carpet and fake wood paneling that had faded to a derby brown.

The best part though was that on our way out I could get an Andes Candy, which you could only get there and no where else, ever.

So, RIP to the Country Omelette of my childhood, I had only good memories of thee.

Some if not all of you out there in the tubes must have a similar family eatery that you remember from childhood, so take some time to remember and lets hear about it. You too lurkers!


Stella Artois said...

The last time Dad ate there, he had oatmeal because he is an old fart with diabetes. I think the last time we ate there was last summer. It is awful though. And thank you for telling everyone about the hamburger story. Not!

baby guanaco said...

if i had to pick something from my childhood, i guess it would be the downtown Shipley's donuts, which Grandpa would walk me to anytime i wanted. it was one of those places where you could see the donuts getting made. i could usually talk Grandpa into buying me a toy, too, at the Fred's nearby. i think the last time i visited my crappy hometown, the Shipley's was gone.

in terms of a standard breakfast place, in college, Tiny Robot, the rest of "our gang," and i, had the Starkville Cafe. best biscuits and sausage gravy ever. ever! the coolest thing would be Sunday mornings because it was always full of a mix of church folks and college kids who were up to no good all the night before. i'll leave it up to you to guess which crowd we were in.

tiny robot said...

My family did the Shipley's thing, too. God, I loved those donuts! We also went to Shoney's fairly regularly, which helped to keep me 'regular' if you know what i mean.

TMI. I know. But them's the facts.

Dr. Harleen Quinzel said...

Does Kirschner's Cafe count?

Haha. Actually, my family used to do La Morada every Friday (Cheese enchiladas! Woot!) and then go to the Loving Spoonful (both of which have moved/don't exist anymore) for icecream afterwards. The best part- we'd always get a pack of Garbage Pail Kids. And there was always a cherry at the bottom of my waffle cone of bubble gum icecream.

Now we do Maudie's, El (R)Patio, Hyde Park Grill, and this crappy little wonderful chinese retaurant on Guadalupe in a rotation. Would be cooler if my sister were there, though.

Yay food!

G.J. McCarthy said...

I actually grew up eating cereal from little boxes over at my abuela's (see, if I were a pretentious writer, I'd have italicized that). They came in this variety bag of assorted Kellogg's-brand cereals. We also had assorted mini bags of Lay's-brand chips, and this giant bag full of bite-sized candy bars. I was well into college before I realized there were full-size versions of the above. It blew my mind. Oh, and people who order lunch at breakfast time rock ... they rock hard. Breakfast is *so* overrated.

Uncle Joe said...

I'm having trouble with that story about my sister ordering food before noon. Now if she had ordered a Lone Star and a pack of Virginia Slims, I'd believe it.

(The restaurant here that we frequented was the Fountain Room. Gone in name now - I think its an Elks Club.)


DM said...

M here...I'd have to say that a place in Enid, OK comes to mind first. It was Richel's Cafeteria, no run of the mill Luby's or Furr's mind you. There was a little train that ran around the wall of the dining rooms and a large Native American statue to pass as you left (this was Oklahoma, after all). I liked it best because I could have a meal of mac & cheese, rolls and jell-o. Mmmmmmm..........

It moved out to the mall on the edge of town and promptly sucked.

tiny robot said...

Furr's. Now that's a name that makes me not hungry.

G.J. McCarthy said...

See, and here I was about to extoll the virtues of Furr's ... I mean, who has a problem with that establishment?? I'll tell you who -- the terrorists.

Seriously, though, my contribution to the nostalgia eatery list? Julep's Diner, which should bring back memories for the Laredo kids out there.

Ate there every Saturday morning with my mom for at least six-plus years. Same thing every time, too -- Club Sandwich and fries. Well actually, I tried (only once) the Julep's "Special" Patty Melt ... open faced burger on toast with sharp cheddar, to which you could add bacon ... and chili ... and grilled onions. ("The Works!")

That's how I ordered mine, and was sick with the sh*ts for like two days afterwards ... never doing *that* again.