“The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude.” ― Julia Child

Thursday, November 25, 2010

No Finer Place For Sure

Today is my birthday. I am 45.

I don't feel 45.

In fact I feel pretty damn good.

My sister and Laura took me off for a birthday lunch. I wasn't told where I was going, but I had an inkling. As it turned out, I was correct. I knew I was in for a serious blowout, because my sister very earnestly told me yesterday that I was not to eat any breakfast. I did as I was told, and boy am I glad I did.

We went to a place in Ashford called the Downtown Diner.

At first glance it doesn't look particularly different from any other restaurant, does it? Apart, that is, from the wall in the outside parking area.

But as soon as one steps inside, it becomes a sea of Americana. This is why they brought me here.

It's a bit blurry, but the posters behind the bar are Breakfast At Tiffany's on the left and The Wizard Of Oz on the right.
The walls are covered with classic movie posters from the golden age of cinema...

And the menu contains some amazing items...

I seriously considered the Spotted Dick, I really did.

I AM reading that right, aren't I? A 24-oz steak? Yes.

Even the kids' menu had some enticing items.
Anyway, it came time to order, and since it was my birthday, I kinda owed it to myself and my readership, all 5 of you, to have the (gulp) MegaBurger... two 1/2 lb burgers with cheese and bacon on a bun, with fries... and a trip to the salad bar. Holy hell.

Well, my trip to the salad bar was good... couscous on the bottom, corn, onions, yellow bell pepper, tomatoes, beetroot, and a piece of crusty baguette.
But then comes the burger. OMG. What have I let myself in for?

This thing is a monster.

So I manfully waded into this beast like Guy Fieri. It took some doing, but I ate the whole thing. The only thing left on my plate was some cress.

SO my sister, who had obviously planned something because she was talking secretively with the waitresses before we ordered, says "Well, can we squeeze a dessert in?". Of course we can. Who did she think she was talking to?
What did she have?
Some chocolate ice cream, with a heapin' hoppin' helpin' of whipped cream.

Laura went for the Banoffee pie, which was barely visible under its layer of whipped cream and sprinkles.

This is what I had - the Knickerbocker Glory. Layers of fruit, jelly and ice cream topped with a mountain of whip and sprinkles. Except when it was brought to me, it looked like this...

Happy Birthday to me!
Excellent food, good fun, good atmosphere, and I am definitely going back for that 24oz steak.

In other food-related news: I got a shower cap for my birthday. Shaped like a Christmas pudding.

Think I'm kidding?


  1. so if you can find a pan big enuff you can boil your head????


Come on and chew the fat!


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