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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Estabrook Grill

My wife and I were sitting around at home today wondering what to do. We got in the car to go out and in the blue Valpak coupon envelope that comes a couple of times a month there was a coupon to Estabrook Grill. It was a $5 off $25 coupon and neither my wife or I had heard of it so it was time for a lunch adventure.

The restaurant was on Palm Street. For those of you not from New England, I'll inform you that any street named after a tree is in the bad part of town. This seems almost universal in the larger cities. I have a feeling that there was a big tree naming fad going on in the post WW II building boom years and now all those old neighborhoods have been abandoned to the poor and unemployed while the wealthier families moved out to the suburbs.

If you would like to hear my fairly universal tip on how to recognize whether or not you're in a bad neighborhood it is to count the number of people around outside doing nothing. Try it, drive through the suburbs and you'll see people gardening or in a lot of neighborhoods you'll see no-one at all. You may see parties or people out for a walk but if you see people standing around doing nothing, you're in the wrong neighborhood.

So thanks to Google maps on my Droid, we found the restaurant easily. It was actually a nice looking place in an old mill building, you can see Joanna in the front of the restaurant here:

[caption id="attachment_512" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Joanna at the restaurant"][/caption]

When we got into the restaurant, we realized that we were the youngest people there. What we found out is that the mill building has been converted into condominiums for elderly people! It was kind of cool to be the youngest person in a place, that hasn't happened to me in a while. The restaurant was seat yourself so we sat by a window. Unfortunately the view was a prime view of one of the tree streets and there was a nasty mound of trash in front of the house across the street. Lots of people were just standing around in the street doing whatever nothing they do.

The special today was of course corned beef and cabbage, I didn't really feel like a dinner so I went for the Cobb salad. This was the first restaurant I've been to where they had poutine on the menu and Joanna wanted to give it a try so she went with the appetizer sampler plate. I've never found the concept to be appealing so I decide on the Cobb salad.

The portions were generous, here are photos of us and our plates:

[caption id="attachment_513" align="aligncenter" width="224" caption="Joanna with her sampler "][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_514" align="aligncenter" width="224" caption="The Big Salad"][/caption]

The food wasn't perfect, the Cobb salad had apples but the apples were very green and bitter. Joanna thought that the wings on her sampler were too hot and the fries in the poutine weren't that fresh. It wasn't a bad meal but it wasn't food I'll be thinking of and wanting to try again in a few weeks. Our bill came to $24.98 but fortunately our server took the coupon anyway. If I had to sum this place up I'd label both the food and the service adequate but not passionate.

[caption id="attachment_515" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="The Courtyard at the Eastabrook and Palms retirement community"][/caption]

After the meal we walked around the courtyard a bit, it was a nice little place and if I make it to an age where I can stop working I wouldn't mind living in a little place like that, but preferably in Las Vegas.

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