never go to the grocery store hungry. a piece of wisdom learned from my mother. hunger pulls things into your cart while you're not looking, much like a wayward child. things like zebra cakes and entenmann's and logs of pepperoni. to ward off this evil, brian and i stopped at stone's restaurant in cheviot on our way to the store.
stone's is one of those places i frequented as a child with my grandparents. i hadn't been there in probably 15+ years, but it was still just as i remembered it. pink wall paper. wood paneling. ruffled kitchen curtain. warm, grandparent-y feel. decorated for christmas with purple tinsel garland.
the menu is basic 'home-cooking' diner fare, with everything you'd expect, including pickled beets. the most expensive dinner is $10.75 (pork chops), but most range from $6-7. breakfast is served anytime. cash only.
our waitress (somehow calling her a waitress is so much more...right...than calling her a server), the sassy aunt i never had, took our orders for the hot turkey and swiss (me) and the double cheeseburger (brian). the hot turkey and swiss with tomatoes was pretty good, not sloppy, with crisp toasted bread. i ordered a side of mashed potatoes with the (foolish) hope they would be real. alas, as i suspected would be the case, an ice cream scoop of potato flakes adorned my plate.
brian has been endeavoring to improve his food descriptions for me, rather than just saying 'it's good'. here is the conversation that transpired:
me: how is your burger?
him: it's good.
i look at him with disapproval and reproach.
him (sighs): it has a plain taste, but a lot of cheese, so that's good.
me (jotting in pocket notebook): the fries?
him: good texture and weight. need more seasoning.
me: potato salad?
him (one of my favorite things he has ever said, ever): it's not very good. i think it could use some paprika.
the light of heaven illuminated our table.
we skipped dessert, a selection of pies and cakes. our bill was under $20, which was good because it gave me the hope that my grandparents have not been ridiculously under-tipping for years, as they believe every restaurant check warrants a standard $2 tip.