Monday, December 18, 2017

America is Great: The Eveready Diner, Hyde Park, NY

The GOP tax "plan", derailments, sexual assaults, hurricane damage, Russian interference, travel bans, climate change, fires - this is just a short sheet of all that's gone wrong in the U.S. lately. So I ask, is it fake news?

I wish it were.

But in Hyde Park last week I found a few things that made me remember that I love this country.

I love tacky Christmas decorations and iconic upstate NY diners
Start with the drive down from Albany. Upstate NY is beautiful - a wonderful winters morning - a successful night chasing down Yeti (they don't like me, I'm too hot), soft pale sun with a dusting of snow on the mountains, and cold butts on heated car seats (there's a horrible Christmas song in there somewhere). Love.
It smelled like fresh baked cookies and bacon
Nothing like it - chrome, bad coffee, and a view of the parking lot - clean and bright
An early lunch was had a the Eveready Diner in Hyde Park. It was busy with mostly locals, cozy, glitzy, smelling of cookies and bacon and homemade soup. Diners. Something else to love about the U.S.A. - an amazing menu of everything you can imagine, breakfast all day, cocktails, retro 50s decor, real waitresses - you are family starting with your first visit.

Someone at Eveready likes salad as much as we do
Stitch went for a meal of Chicken Pot Pie ($14.99) - with soup or salad (salad) served with their special house dressing (sort of a sweet Italian with bits of tomato). The salad had fresh mushrooms and broccoli and spinach and cuke and red onion slices and tomato and crisp romaine - wow for any restaurant, especially a diner!!!  With the pie came a side of mashed and some fresh steamed veg. This was a big plate. The crust was flaky and crisp, with big chunks of chicken, and a rich flavorful gravy that tasted like a hug.
A big plate - the Chicken Pot Pie could feed two superheroes easily
Puppy started with a cup of Ed's Chicken Soup ($3.49) - again, big chicken chunks, bits of red pepper and onion and scallions and celery, a rich yellow with just a hit of rice - what's not to love on a frosty day?
Oyster crackers (:
She followed up with a Hudson Salad ($11.99) - lettuce, pecans, cranberries, apple slices, lettuce, and grilled chicken on top, more of that house Italian instead of a honey mustard viniagrette. A lovely combination, all things good. Great salads in a diner??? We were impressed. More love.

Surprise! I went for the Chicken Souvlaki Pita ($9.99) - comes with fries (crispy, hot), slaw (grated, sweet, crisp), a hunk of pickle (love). I started with a Greek Salad for an extra $2.00 - pepperoncini, feta, stuffed grape leaves, balanced, fresh and delicious. The dressing was also that house stuff  - I would have preferred something greekier instead, but it was still good.
Greek salad with Italian Dressing  
I've been eating my way (as does any god or goddess or superhero, of course) through diners in Upstate for quite a while now, and eating a lot of these chicken souvlaki because, most of the time, they are delicious. Sorry to say that this one was on the low end of the scale - the meat was dry, so was the pita, the tzaziki was mild (needed garlic), the sandwich needed veg (more tomatoes and onions). I ordered extra sauce ($0.50) and dug my way through, but it needed some krytonite or something, I don't know, just dull.
The Chicken Souvlaki needed garlic or kryponite

Overall, Eveready is a gem, a piece of Americana. Don't miss it.

From there it was off to Val-Kill, Eleanor Roosevelt's "cottage", all decked out for the holidays. She was an amazing woman - smart, compassionate, tireless, a brilliant writer and statesman, the first real first lady lady, amazing, with a conscience, working her whole adult life to make the world a better place for all people. She gave hope to many during her days. And still she brings hope to mine.
Eleanor's living room decked out for the holidays
Happy holidays to the U.S.A. May yours and my god or goddess protect the weak and forgive the mighty in these difficult times. Wishing you health, money (why not!?), and love.

Zena, Goddess of Fire


RBS, Philom. said...

Wonderful, evocative post! We love Hyde Park, will have to go back to Val-Kill. I didn't know they decorated for the holidays...

We love diners, too... Latham '76 is a fav

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