Twilight Of The Restaurant Critic…


Often unnoticed by ourselves, indications can become quite evident otherwise once one has begun to descend from the crest of their past successes. A former boxing great ends up slogging small kitchen appliances on television. The winner of an Academy Award finds his following movie appearance alongside noted thespian Hulk Hogan. On burros. In Wisconsin.  


It matters not if you are incredibly famous, or simply one of the huddled masses - when the wind comes out of your sails, you just may be the last to admit it. Take myself for example, Canard Beestro, restaurant critic, clearly in sight of the end of a once entirely distinguished newspaper career:


Exhibit A:

Binky’s Roadside Diner:  A Breakfast Review.

(2 stars out of 5)

Binky’s Roadside Diner brings to mind the unseemly marriage of TV’s Happy Days cafe, coupled with a Greyhound Depot cafeteria in Billings, Montana. Customers cannot help but search about earnestly for Mel, Flo and Alice as they await the unhurried but eventual arrival of their waitress.


Finally “grand-mama” arrives - resplendent in her hair net and well-worn server’s uniform. I am finally offered a cup of coffee, and my first indication of Binky’s fare. The menu is fairly well typed, if you consider “Veal Corridor Bleu” might be something the chef is simply experimenting with…


As it was early morning, I decided to give the breakfast offerings a try. Several burly gentlemen in thick red flannel jackets were consuming some of the popular choices. Not yet bolting pell-mell for the washroom, I assumed that unless they had built up a natural resistance to the meals, the selections should be safe enough to partake.


My order arrived swiftly. It is impossible for even a microwave oven to blast out a meal in that nominal amount of time, so I must assume Chef Presto maintains a lukewarm mound of each item standing at the ready - to momentarily lay upon the grill, flip, then hastily arrange with the flaccid twig of parsley ultimately perched atop the plate’s contents (intended I must assume to constitute a visual distraction to the eagerness of the egg yolk’s intent to depart from the ensemble).


And now to the meat of the matter, quite literally. The eagerly-seared sausages clung to each other as if portraying a pan flute. To be honest, I cannot recall the last time I sampled a breakfast sausage that had the texture of a boiled armadillo, but these liberally-charred links screamed for the addition of a turkey carving set. Perhaps I should have asked for medium rare…

Surrounding the mortally-wounded eggs, a medley of what I assumed was clam chowder and Astroturf was identified as hash browns and chives. Finally, an edible alternative to paper maché!!


Overall (and primarily due to the remarkable resemblance of their tepid auburn beverage to actual coffee), I must give Binky’s: 2 stars out of a potential 5.      

Tomorrow, a review of Theodore’s Boot Scootin’ House Of Bagels…Alas, poor For(i)k…