Anyone who knows me, knows I love a good happy hour. Giant margaritas and cheap tacos? Yes, please. But what about cocktail hour in the home done with a little more sophistication?
The cocktail hour (which is essentially moved to a restaurant and called happy hour) was a staple of life beginning in the 1920s, and probably best recognized in the 1950s and 60s. You can always have your own private cocktail hour. You come home from work, a glass full of goody liquid, and a relaxing chair, perhaps some music in the background. Think:
“Honey, I’m hoooome.”
“Oh, dear, how was your day? Here’s your scotch on the rocks. I think I’ll have a Tom Collins.”
The above scenario could be envisioned either the man is coming home or the woman, and is greeted by their significant other at the door with a drink. How come people don’t do this anymore? (Not as many alcoholics?)
I have the most horrendous sweet tooth. As will be evidenced by this blog post. You have been forewarned.
Candy cigarettes were one of my ultimate favorites as a child. I would ride around on my bicycle, pretending it was my car, “cruising,” all while pretending to puff away on a candy cigarette. Horrible, right? Can you believe I have never once taken even one puff of a real cigarette? Well, it’s true. So, it apparently wasn’t all that horrible. Most people would say that this candy tasted chalky, and it did. That was the best part of it! Would you believe that they peddle these as candy sticks now? Perhaps children would be more inclined to smoke later on in life because of candy cigarettes, but what are the statistics on children who became vampires from eating and playing with waxed fangs? I make light, seriously kids, don’t smoke, it’s gross. In fact, you can still get authentic candy cigarettes online from several different sites. (Sidenote: They also kind of remind me of the disk-like candy that tasted like Pepto-Bismal. I don’t remember the name of it, but I remember always wanting one of the small bags of them when I would go to the grocery store with my Mom. Anyone remember what those were called and if you can still get them?)
Finding a place that has been in existence since 1949 is a win for me. Finding Rudford’s Restaurant, is a definite win. Even though this place doesn’t have diner in the name, it is your typical, classic diner.Which is a good thing.
It has that classic feel and atmosphere to it, a great variety of locals who frequent the place, yummy “home cooked” food, and oldie songs playing in the background. The booths are covered in red, the lights hanging overhead are stark in blue shades, and the walls of the kitchen and windows are metal. You can see it was built and has been around since 1949, all of which I love.
A friend and I went (who I have to thank, she is the one who sent me the Yelp link to the place) this morning. The staff is super friendly and have that “down home, we’ll probably remember your name” kind of vibe.
Watson Drug & Fountain
Growing up (and when I go back for visits), trips to the Dairy Queen (I’ve been made fun of for saying THE Dairy Queen, but coming from a place that got it’s first stoplight when I was in high school, and to this day only has two, you use such prophetic sentence structure) were a common occurrence. My Dad has never had to ask what I want. It is an unasked and understood knowledge: a chocolate malt. I am a malt monster. I have a thirst for malty goodness that is never fully quenched. That subtle chocolate flavoring, the creamy yet flaky texture, the cold abundance dancing across the tongue . . .*wipes drool off chin* Pardon me. As I was saying, I love malts. I have a bit of a ritual with them, I like eating part of it and then preserving the rest in the freezer for a day or two. It transforms into a crunchy-melt-into-creamy excellence that is unmatched.
I love to bake. I like to sort of, kind of attempt to cook. I like to mix beverages. So I thought, “Why not throw in an old fashion recipe once in awhile?” First up? Cinnamon rolls. And no, I did not go to the local bakery to purchase. And I did not get a pre-mix of dry ingredients. I almost always (98% of the time) bake from scratch. (I’m not a math genius. The 98% was pretty arbitrary. But my point is, it’s incredibly rare for me not to mix and do it all myself.) What’s more nostalgic than whipping up a recipe with your own ingredients and the muscle of your own hand? And beyond that, it solicits childhood memories of the aromas wafting through the house while my Mom would be preparing something you knew was going to be incredible. Something she made with her own hands. Grandparents and aunts coaxing ingredients into something unforgettable at family dinners. Again, their own, not store bought. And anyone who knows my Mom, knows cinnamon rolls are one of those dishes for which she is known. So it seemed like a good place to start. When I bake, I play music. And I dance. And I drink. I’m not saying you have to do these things, but I can’t guarantee your recipe and final product will turn out quite right otherwise.