Sunday, November 02, 2008

Bad Breakfast

Every weekend, usually Saturday morning, Bill and I head on down to Rehoboth to have breakfast at a little Greek restaurant. Johnnie, our waitress, knows our order because we're old and predictable. We always order the same. Bill gets a fried egg sandwich on white bread (not toasted) with double slathering of mayonnaise. I get one fried egg (over hard), sausage, home fries and buttered and toasted rye bread. Bill gets a regular coffee and I get decaff. Service is excellent and our whole bill (without tip), comes to $10.40. Can't be beat. So, we've been rolling along every weekend with our breakfast at Zorba's. This morning was different. We hit a snag. I think it had to do with the fact that Daylight Savings Time ended last night. We normally go in early for breakfast, and since we lost an hour last night ("fall back" for Eastern Standard Time), we arrived at the front door of our little cozy restaurant at the Food Lion shopping strip in Rehoboth just as they were opening the doors. Johnnie, our regular waitress, greeted us. There were no other patrons in the restaurant. There was a chill in the air; the heat hadn't been turn on yet. That should have been my first warning. Johnnie asked us if we needed a menu. We told her we didn't, we would take our regular order. I suspected that the kitchen wasn't up and running yet. When we received our breakfast about ten minutes later, my suspicions were confirmed. My coffee had a fruit fly floating around in it. That reminded me of the old joke when a restaurant patron noticed a fly floating around in his soup when it was served to him by his waiter. He asked the waiter "What is that fly doing in my soup?" The waiter looked and responded to the patron "The backstroke." This fruit fly was dead, it wasn't doing any backstroke. I took my teaspoon and dip out the dead fruit fly. I looked at my plate of home fries, sausage and egg. The home fries were not browned but did have a lot of grease. The egg was okay. I took a bit of the sausage. It didn't taste like the regular sausage that I was used to. It was greasy and strangly flat. I've always liked their sausage. It was spicy with just the right amount of hotness. This sausage was different. I gave Bill one of the sausages. Bill is like Mikey of the old cereal ads, he'll eat anything. Bill even said that the sausage "didn't taste right." My toast was stale. The butter was on top of the stale toast, rather than melted into it. I know, I know. I sound like an old fuss budget. But hey, that's why I've always gone to this restaurant for breakfast. It was consistent in quality. I probably should have said something to our waitress. However, I didn't this time because I didn't want to create an uncomfortable situation for her first thing in the morning. So, I decided to "let it go" this morning. I'll give them a pass on this one because we did arrive so early for breakfast. We will go again next week. However, if we encounter the same situation with the weird tasting sausage, greasy home fries, stale toast, and fruit flies floating in my coffee, I'll send it back to the cook in the kitchen to do over again. Of course this is always a chancy thing to do. Remember the old story when Jesse Jackson worked in the kitchen of a restaurant when he was a young man. He used to spit in the food that the white patrons sent back, or so the urban legend says (I tend to believe this one.) Definitely a lot to consider. In the meantime, I have a feeling I'm going to be "enjoying" that one sausage I ate this morning all day.


nitewrit said...


This has me a bit mystified. What could the change from daylight savings have to do with it? We turned the clocks back, so what was 6:00 AM would have been 7:00 AM last week, so it is doubtful the people in the restaurant forgot to reset their time and were late getting prepared. If they forgot to reset, they would have actually opened earlier than usual.

If you had forgot your clocks, you would have been later than usual arriving, not getting their just as they opened unless that is when you usually arrive, but then why would you mention this?

Only other possibility with clock setting would be either someone sprung ahead an hour instead of falling back or one person set the clock back and then a second person didn't realize it and set it back again, but in this latter case, once again the restaurant would have opened two hours early, not late. Hmmm, curious.

You said you usually went on Saturday. this is Sunday. perhaps it was a different cook on duty, maybe because of the day or perhaps the regular cook was off for some reason.

I think some restaurants may be going to lower quality ingrediates to make up for the rise in food prices. could explain the sausages.

Other possibility is if the place hadn;'t got their prep work done for the day yet, you might have gotten some warmed up food left from the day before. That could explain the fruit fly in the coffee. Oh, well, little added protein, I suppose.

I don't know what my distorted monster picture had to do with your plight. We were out four nights this week -- no complaints.


Ron said...

You touched upon something. A different cook (which is what I think happened) and the restaurant cutting back on quality to save money. We've had that problem with another restaurant we used to frequent. Partners used to have the best hamburgers on "Burger Night" but now they have greaseburgers. There business has dropped off accordingly. Hey, your monster picture was pefect for the way I felt this morning after I left. It's a great picture! Nobody knows it's you of course. Oh, I guess they do now. I have a whole raft of pictures that fit my many different moods. Since you have the fancy dancy computer that takes pictures like that, and I don't, I thought I would take advantage. Now I'm going to go out and get a Wimpy burger at the Parrot. Last time I had one, it was still good. I hope I don't make a twofer today. If I have another bad experience, you'll have to send me another monster pic.