Saturday, December 3, 2016

316. The Neighborhood Cafe

I love going to the Neighborhood Cafe. A lot of people love fancy restaurants that serve the next, big fancy style of food. I think the thing I like most about the place is that it feels like people actually want to be there. I went to the restaurant on a date last night. (As I have so many times.) It was a Friday night, not my usual time to go. I’m usually there for breakfast or brunch. I love their breakfast food.

My date said that the waitstaff and the cooks and stuff looked like they were enjoying themselves. That was interesting because I usually don’t look at waitstaff or cooks or hosts like that. I forget that they are humans as well. Even if the place isn’t the most formal, I prefer authentic warmth over forced niceties.

I started going there about three or four years ago when my dad and I had breakfast with my friend Al. We wanted to find a convenient place, (Or maybe my dad just looked up something simple?) and we decided on the Neighborhood Cafe. The simplicity of the place, the good food, and the nice atmosphere all turned me onto it. I think in the year 2015, I went to the place about 20 times. It was just that wonderful.

A number of things on their menu are fantastic. I usually opt for the carnitas breakfast burrito, the meatloaf melt, or the snelling scrambler, depending on what time of the day I am there. Just about everything I have had there has been absolutely awesome, except for one thing: the turkey club.

I remember the day. I was covering a third place basketball game at Concordia University in St. Paul just down the road from the Neighborhood Cafe. I had a few hours before the next game, so I thought this would be a good stop before the next set of games. Surprisingly, I had never had the Turkey Club there, so I thought this would be a good time to try it. It was a classic club sandwich, cut into fourths, on toast, with bacon, and layered. It didn’t give me the satisfaction of a normal turkey sandwich. I think part of it may have been the meat—that’s always the key for a good sandwich. Maybe I was just too tired, or my mind was in other places, but it’s the only thing on the menu that I don’t recommend.

There have been a number of times where I’ve had a very cute waitress. She has a wide smile, a few tattoos, and seems like she enjoys her job. I’ve mentioned her to a few friends. I’m not against going out with your waitress (I have asked out some before) but I don’t think it would be a good idea this time. If I had a bad time with her, I wouldn’t be able to go back to the Neighborhood Cafe.

It feels good to have a “place” to go to when you’re upset or angry. It feels good to have a place that you enjoy when you’re down, or just a place that you automatically when you want to out to a place.

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