Sunday, November 17, 2013

Brooklyn Diner Dining And Doggy Bags

Having a meal out with The Dowager Duchess usually results in carrying home a doggy bag for a non-existent dog. The Duchess is a light eater and eating light is an impossibility at just about any Brooklyn diner (not to be confused with the brand-named "Brooklyn Diner" in Manhattan). A Brooklyn diner meal for one could easily serve three.

Our favorite nearby Brooklyn diner is the Parkview Diner on Cropsey Avenue. That's where last week's photo of the three of us was taken (click here). The Parkview Diner is also where you'll find photos on the menu of the Coney Island Parachute Jump along with the sailors my mother and her friend Harriet "picked up" in 1946. (Click here for that shocking story from The Duchess's past.)

IMAGES OF THE PARKVIEW DINER ON ONE OF OUR DREARY NEW YORK DAYS.
(CLICK THE DINER PHOTOS TO ENLARGE.)
THE TAKE-OUT MENU. AN ABBREVIATED VERSION OF THE OVER-SIZED MENU.
(THE PARACHUTE JUMP AND THE DOWAGER DUCHESS'S SAILORS, BOTTOM RIGHT PANEL.)

My mother usually gets at least one meal at home out of what she can't finish at a diner. But, she's now in the habit of taking home things for Chucky (the Kid Brother), as well.

FREE STUFF... AND FREE REFILLS.
(AND, MY SPANISH FRIENDS, FREE REFILLS ON DRINKS, TOO!)
MORE FREE STUFF... ALSO BOTTOMLESS.
(EL GRECO DINER, IN NEARBY SHEEPSHEAD BAY, HAS PEPPERONI/CHEESE BREAD!)

The Dowager Duchess doesn't go anywhere without precision-folded plastic bags in her purse. If she notices there are crackers, bread sticks, or bread remaining in the bread basket, she says, "Give me that for Chucky." Left-over French fries? "I'll take those for Chucky." Extra dinner napkins (the paper ones), "Chucky likes those. Pass them to me." I asked The Duchess if Chucky would like the silverware. Her quick response, "He doesn't need silverware." (Then I got "the look.")

I ATE LIGHT ONE DAY... A FOUR-EGG OMELET AND HASH BROWNS (FOR TWO).
(THAT'S A 13-INCH PLATTE.R)
JUMBO BLACK & WHITE COOKIES WERE A FAVORITE OF MY SISTER DALE AND ME.
(I RESTRAINED MYSELF. BESIDES, I LIKED THEM BETTER WITH HARD ICING.)

Since San Geraldo never witnessed this kind of behavior during his childhood in South Dakota (it's the norm in New York), he usually looks a bit embarrassed. The Duchess tries to ease his embarrassment by saying, "Well, it's already on the table. They're just going to throw it out anyway."

On our flight to Dublin, we had lots of packaged items. I grabbed them all and said, "Save these for Chucky" (which would again have gotten me "the look" from the Dowager Duchess). Then, I ate them all. As they used to say on the Star-Kist Tuna commercials, "Sorry Charlie!"

SORRY CHARLIE!

24 comments:

  1. I've loved your trip Mitch. We flew the red eye last week, but it didn't have that effect on me. I've just spent most of my life sleeping since. It's hit me hard this time, must be my age!
    Glad your home safely.
    Di
    xoxo

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    1. Di:
      Sometimes, the jet lag is awful; other times, a breeze. I can't for sure figure out way. And since I myself am very, very young, it has nothing to do with age.

      However, it sure is easier to deal with now that we're not working. Need a nap? Take one!

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  2. Love those diners! They don't have them out here in the midwest.
    I don't even know what to say about our American portions at restaurants. It's ridiculous. And dangerous, to those of us who eat out frequently.

    The black and white cookie... of course... Seinfeld, episode whatever (#77, actually). Elaine. Jerry. "Two races, living side by side in harmony." I'm sure most of your readers have seen it :) Season 5, episode 13

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    1. Judeet:
      I think they portions really are absurd. My mother likes them because she gets one or two more meals out of them.

      I loved that Seinfeld episode. It was amazing how often that show hit close to home. (Marble rye!!!)

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  3. There is one of those diners on the main street in my Ohio hometown. I've never eaten there, but if they serve those omelets I may have to indulge. Yeah... we learned that the wrapped crackers are "extra" .... at least in Sevilla ;-)

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    1. Sharon:
      Paying for the wrapped breads and crackers was a surprise to us. But, not all restaurants in Sevilla charged for them... which made it even more confusing.

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  4. Yes! Those American portions! I remember when we were on the west coast cycling and stopped at a diner in Washington somewhere and couldn't believe the 'all inclusive' breakfast!! Still go on about it!! lol
    Your mother Mitch is so representative of her generation. My parents used to come home from eating out somewhere with their pockets stuffed full of everything!! Even those tiny little paper packets of salt and pepper. Maybe there it has something to do with living through the depression?
    And don't we all just LOVE 'the look'! Haven't had one of those for a while now.
    And finally, thanks to Judith for that Seinfeld memory....lol!

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    1. Jim:
      When we closed our hotel, we gave huge bags of Sweet'N Low packets to my mother and my aunt. I told them, they'd never have to steal them from restaurants again. "It's not stealing," they both said, "They expect you to take them!"

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  5. I'm wondering about the tray of "freebies". I recognize the pickled beets (one of my favorites) and the coleslaw (can't stand it) but what is the garbonzo bean dish? Is it like three-bean salad? We have a real live diner here in downtown St Paul. In fact, it's featured in "The Prairie Home Companion" movie. At the end of the film, Garrison Keillor, Lily Tomlin, Meryl Streep and others are sitting there reminiscing. I have never been there so I don't know what their portions are like.

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    1. Ms. Sparrow:
      The garbanzos in this case were tossed lightly in olive oil and I think a little parsley and onions were added. Pickled beets are one of San Geraldo's favorite treats... and one of my all-time least favorite. If a beet even touches something on my plate, I have to cut it away. But I do love cole slaw.

      Mickey's Diner in St. Paul! I've never eaten there, but it's one of the original American diners and is what they looked like (at their best).

      The first time I ever ate in a diner (and it looked like Mickey's) was when my mother's friend was taking care of Dale and me when our brother was born. I was not yet 6. She ordered franks and beans. I HATE beans. I therefore hated diners and didn't set foot in one again until I went away to university... and discovered you didn't have to order beans.

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  6. God, I love diner food. True comfort food!

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    1. Bob:
      And anything you could possibly in the mood for... well, maybe not sushi.

      Delete
  7. You captured the New York diner. I may have to go out and get a black and white.

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    1. Carol Z:
      When we first moved to Brooklyn, there were two incredible bakeries on our street. Everything was fresh, even the Black & White cookies. Since then, any time I've had one, that's what I've been hoping for. I saw at Starbucks while we were in NY that even they're selling them now. Packaged, miniature Black & Whites... I didn't try them.

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  8. I love the look of that vintage diner. What a great place to take the DD.

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    1. Stephen:
      The food is consistently good at this place and we, of course, have a favorite server. (Ask for Mary.)

      Delete
  9. This looks like a lot of fun! We used to have a diner near where I lived in my 20s, but it's long gone now. There is still one in Westfield, NY which has that great diner atmosphere, and good diner food. Lucky you!

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    1. Kristi:
      I looked up diners in Westfield and found Westfield Main Diner -- old and authentic. Is that it?

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  10. We have a summer cottage near Westfield, the town where my parents were married when they eloped in 1936.

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  11. I saw that diner and immediately thought of the Breakfast in America Special on PBS. I swear that this diner was included but maybe not. I choose to believe it is ~~ breakfast is the best isn't it! Love DD's take(pocketing) all the left-overs ~~~ seems like there are never left-overs because of the non-stop replenishing. I'm always stuffing my face in places like this thinking they would know I pocketed a whole loaf of bread or whatever. LOL
    Ron

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    1. Ron:
      Wow. I can't imagine Parkview would make it onto that show. I could have breakfast any time of day. As for The Dowager Duchess and "left-overs," don't get me started on hotel towels!

      Delete
  12. I think your Mom and my Mom are the same woman!

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