I had the rare chance to have breakfast at two of my very favorite places on consecutive days last week...and I took it. I'm a diner breakfast hound, and I maintain a whole breakfast hagiography in my head, based on coffee quality (and mug quality, too), pancake texture, homefried flavor, omelette innovation (the Miss Albany Diner takes the cake on that one, and if there was any way to fit them into this breakfast orgy, I would have), and overall atmosphere.
So Friday morning I got everyone up (after going out and filling up on diesel and coffee myself), left our motel in Northampton, Mass., and drove through the countryside to the Roadhouse, just north of Belchertown. I first ate here with Cathy, back in 1989, when we drove up north out of Connecticut early on a Saturday morning, just cruising around. We came across it just as we were getting hungry, and it was great. I've been back three or four times since, and never been disappointed.
The place looked almost exactly the same: small, open, simple. But the menu had evolved. They've gone very much fresh, local, and organic food: fair trade coffee (delicious, get the Fogbuster blend), local ingredients, and organic where possible. I got two eggs over easy, big chunky homefries, thick toasted slices of house-baked onion-dill bread, and a delicious house-made corned beef hash. It was excellent, and we didn't need anything to eat until around 3:00.
The next day, I woke up before everyone else again, and toddled down the street to another of Lew's Breakfast Top Ten: The Littleton Diner. It's a classic Sterling diner (which has had a dining room added on in the rear), and I parked at the counter, had three or four cups of coffee, and snarfed down a grilled blueberry muffin. Later, after everyone had woken up and got dressed, I led them all down the street, and we ate properly.
I had exactly the same meal I'd had at the Roadhouse the day before...talk about separate but equal. The Littleton Diner's house-made corned beef hash has real chunks of corned beef in it, you can really feel that it's meat, and it's superb, probably the best corned beef hash I've ever had.
Happy guy. Can't wait till tomorrow, when I get to have breakfast at Moody's, in Waldoboro, Maine...anyone know a great place for breakfast in Portland?