Author Topic: When diner language changes  (Read 1904 times)

Offline ladywithpans

  • Mayor
  • ******
  • Posts: 548
  • Gender: Female
When diner language changes
« on: December 26, 2017, 05:15:25 PM »
Dear Astorians,

Today I ordered an egg-and- cheese sandwich on a roll, a New York staple, with or without bacon. Before Thanksgiving, approximately, I always got it with the cheese already melted. Now I get it unmelted at three eateries so far, and I have to send the sandwich back to get it with melted cheese. This was never the case until some time this fall.

I fell in love with egg-and-cheese sandwiches while I was working in Harlem, before I retired 3 years ago. I continued ordrring them after I retired. No matter where in NYC I ordered them, I invariably got melted cheese. Now, within the last two months, I've been getting the the cheese unmelted.

In the restaurant where I'm eating my sandwich now, after sending the first one back, the counterman says that nothing has changed, that they've always served unmelted cheese, and says, "I'm not going round and round with you." But I remember this place's egg & cheese sandwiches, and he remembers me. I know the bliss I've had with previous sandwiches here, and he expects me to alter my memories on his say-so.

So has a decree come down to all the little breakfast places, "Henceforth the default for all egg & cheese sandwiches shall be with unmelted cheese"? How are we supposed to keep track of these ukases? The weirdest thing is that counter staff abandon their usual courtesy and get angry when you say this is not what you ordered.

Thanks to Toast & Roast on Broadway for bucking the trend so far. Best egg & cheese sandwich in Astoria.

The same thing happened in the 90's or aughts with coffee. I ordered coffee regular at an eatery in Elmhurst and they gave me coffee with milk & sugar. No, I said, I ordered regular, which means milk no sugar. The counter woman shot back, "That's what you think!" I replied, "That's what I know."

From that time on I never ordered "coffee regular" again. The meaning was too unreliable. I established the habit of ordering "coffee, milk, no sugar." So when I went to a café here in Astoria and ordered exactly that, I got coffee with milk & sugar. I sent it back, and was told that "regular" means milk and sugar. I had not ordered regular; I'd ordered milk, no sugar. I'd learned my lesson.

I told the counterman that most places melt the cheese without being told to. He said we don't (actually they used to until earlier this month), and if you want melted cheese you should ask for melted cheese.

But since not every place require you to spell it out, I suppose I should make my default order "egg and melted cheese on a roll. What next - will I have to order "one chicken egg and melted American cheese on an untoasted hard roll made with wheat flour"?


I'm the last customer remaining, the restaurant management has just turned the radio up to a deafening volume, and I think he's continuing to turn the gain up. Let him. I'm not leaving until I'm finished sending this message.

« Last Edit: December 26, 2017, 05:29:24 PM by ladywithpans »
Want your name in lights? Change it to Exit --Soupy Sales

Offline Yaxpac

  • Mayor
  • ******
  • Posts: 811
  • Gender: Male
Re: When diner language changes
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2018, 12:37:57 PM »
I would simply like to commend you on the novel that you wrote about melted cheese at a diner and about sugar in bodega coffee. 

I can only hope that when I am retired like you, that I have more to occupy my time than with nonsense such as this

Offline Starwind51

  • Governor
  • ***********
  • Posts: 3352
  • Gender: Female
Re: When diner language changes
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2018, 08:36:15 PM »
Why is Lady With Pans ordering this kind of thing in a restaurant?  She's got the pans, why isn't she making it at home?  What bothers me about her post is the un-toasted roll.  If I were making it, I'd make the eggs, put them on the bottom part of a roll, put the cheese on the eggs & cover it with the top part of the roll.  Lining the baking pan with aluminum foil, of course, I'm not cleaning up melted cheese, I'd bake the sandwich in the oven where, of course, the roll would get toasted toasty, and of course, the cheese melts.  I didn't start drinking coffee till I was half my present age, so I wasn't educated in coffee lingo.  When I first started drinking coffee I put in massive amounts of raw sugar.  After a while I realized I was drinking it for the sugar and had no idea what the coffee tasted like.  I cut back and cut back on the sugar, and now, unless the coffee is served iced,  can't stand sugar in coffee.  Recently the store ran out of 1/2&1/2 and I had to buy cream instead.  When I went back to using 1/2&1/2 it seemed sadly watery.  I lost about 4 lbs while using the cream.  Maybe I should go back to using it. 

Offline bstewart

  • Mayor
  • ******
  • Posts: 738
  • Gender: Male
Re: When diner language changes
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2018, 09:01:03 AM »
I can only hope ...
If that message is any clue, you will not.


Visit our sister site Jackson Heights Life