Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Lunch Time In Sun Valley

One thing I miss about living in a big city is all the different opportunities you have to stuff your face. When I worked in Seattle and if I didn't bring a lunch from home, a good portion of the morning (2-3 hours) was devoted to deciding where to eat at lunchtime. My co-workers Scott, Cody, Larry. Mark and I (and sometimes Dave) would toss out ideas on where and what to eat.
Within a 5 mile range our opportunities were limitless and cheap!
My Top Ten favorite places were:
  1. The Thai place on the corner of 152nd and 1st ave that was an old IHOP. ****
  2. The Australian Pie Company (beef and potato)****
  3. Ezells Chicken (3 piece white snack spicy)****
  4. PHO - kitty corner from the Thai IHOP (I'd let Scott order for me). ***1/2
  5. Bernie and Boys (Turkey Leg - (hint: stay away from the clam pizza!)) ***
  6. Tacos Guaymus (Shrimp Burrito) ***
  7. Dog and Cat (I never knew the real name (Chinese Food)) ***
  8. Hans German Deli (Sausages - giant pretzel - snitzengruben (5 is my limit!)) ****
  9. Pecos Pit (Pork, medium, spike it! (Jerry Buys...we fly) ***
  10. Fred Meyer Deli (broccoli salad (we'd go here when Bernies didn't have any good side salads, which was around 98% of the time)) **

You can see why it was so difficult for us to come up with a lunch option in any less than 2 hours. If Scott would recommend, "Pho, " Larry would suggest, "dog and cat." If Cody said, "Turkey Leg, " I'd say "Thai." And round and round we would go. Work was a hindrance! How could we possibly work with so many choices and decisions to be made. Luck was ours if the decision was made for us by vendors coming into the headend to visit. Lee Kirk a Bigband Network employee and vendor (and personal friend of mine) was notorious for suggesting that he'd pay if we all had Thai. Nobody turned that deal down. Jerry Barrett was notorious at coming into the headend and saying, "I'll buy if you fly." Of course it had to be Pecos Pit and nothing else. Robert Dignum was famous for buying us all lunch that stunk and flat out sucked. He'd go to Albertson's and get "bad chicken" (which I liked) and horrible side salads. I only say horrible because we found half a "Green Grocer Cicada" bug inside the potato salads once. Of course that meant one of us unlucky blokes had eaten the other half. It got so bad that when Robert would offer to buy we'd just all say "No Thanks." Even if we had no money! Many times our dilemma was solved by just asking Mark Anderson to pick up some Ezells Chicken on the way in to work(his shift started at 11:30am) and we'd pay him back.

The beautiful thing is that the food in Burien/Seattle was somewhat inexpensive. Well, relatively speaking. I now live in Sun Valley Idaho where options aren't as plentiful and the prices are sky high. While it is possible to eat very good and well prepared food here, in many cases it requires taking out a second mortgage to pay for it. Just about every place in town has a lunch special on their menu and the price is generally $10-$15. Nasty. Too rich for me! These prices have reminded me what a good cook my wife Ruth is.

I did find a little gem of a lunch bargain here in the Gem State. It's called Atkinson's Grocery and Deli. Now here's a place that does it right. Anytime throughout the day you can go to the deli and have a sandwich custom made for your palate. Options are many and the prices are quite reasonable. You can choose whole or half and with either one you will not be disappointed.

My order usually goes something like this:

The lady greets me at the counter and says, "What would joo like?" (Peruvian)

I say, "whole sandwhich please"

"What would joo like on it?"

With wild eyes I rattle off my order in one long run-on sentence. "I'll take pastrami on marbled rye, with Swiss cheese, miracle whip (don't tell me... I know) all the vegetables including avacado with boars head sweet and sour mustard!"

The lady then says, "Would joo like peekle and cheeps? Hmmmm?"

Smiling broadly, I respond nodding my head, "Yes!!" The nice thing here is that the chips are Tim's Cascade. Made in Algona/Auburn Washington (reminds me of home).

I then wait patiently while the nice Peruvian lady whips up my order.

Smiling she returns with my sandwich, peekle and cheeps. I accept it like I've won an major award. Thank you , thank you so much!

All of this plus excellent service = $5.99 USD



jeremy said...

Next time I'm in Sun Valley we need to hit up Atkinsons Deli again. Good stuff!
I can also vouch for the Thai IHOP place in Burien. When I worked nights I liked stopping by there and taking pad thai to work with me. Very delicious. Hmmmm...I'm in the mood for pad thai right now...gotta go!!

Jessie said...

The thing about your blog this time is that i was trying to settle my stomache by thinking of ANYthing but food. Food makes me want to puke right now. So ironically it was all about food. But i found that i couldn't stop reading the whole thing. So even though i am probably going to run to the toilet after this, i just wanted to say i loved reading it. And i did enjoy it.

Becka said...

I was procrastinating and dreading going to the store to get the finishing touches for dinner tonight (hot wings and potato salad), but you just got me in the mood to eat, eat, eat! Thank you!

Anonymous said...

You should try Johnny G's Subshack, Noho's, Desperado's, Perry's, Lefty's, or Grumpy's for cheap eats in Sun Valley/Ketchum.

Brent Hope said...

I wasn't impressed with Desperados and everything I've ordered there was $10 However, I did try Lefty's yesterday and got a 1/2 pound burger on sourdough with home cut fries for only $8 It was excellent food at a good price.

Krysten & David said...

Thanks! Now I am starving! If only I could pull that sandwich through my computer screen.