Sunday, August 25, 2013

Obama Skips the Garbage

Much grumbling in town because the President's Buffalo-to-Binghamton bus tour the other day was planned to stop in Seneca Falls and Syracuse but skip Rochester. And then big surprise, they detoured off the Thruway and Obama showed up for lunch at our yuppie Park Ave. He had a grilled cheese sandwich and a cream of tomato, artichoke and cheese soup. Paid the check, including the Uof R students who sat with him, saying "It's on me."  Your tax dollars at work. 

Local opinion is that it’s a shame he didn’t try Rochester’s foremost culinary achievement, the Garbage Plate. 
My grandson Aaron, up from
Manhattan last week, said his Rochester friends took him out for just that, though not at the original restaurant, Nick Tahou’s.  Tahou having trade-marked the name in 1992, other Rochester venues are reduced to listing it on their menus as the Trash Plate, the Dumpster, the Junkyard, the Kitty Litter.  The plate includes two hots or hamburgers (Aaron reports he opted for two cheeseburgers), atop home fries or french fries, beans and macaroni salad, the whole topped with spoonsful of onions and special hot sauce.  Accompanying bread and rolls usually – but not always -- served on a separate plate. 
           An upscale hotel restaurant here offers it as the Plat de Refuse.  There the burger is made from elk and topped by Vermont Cheddar, the hot dog is bison, the macaroni salad includes grape tomatoes, the beans are home baked and the hot sauce is a wild game chili. 
           But enough.  I'm getting hungry, and I'm off for lunch at the other place Aaron's buddies said is a Rochester imperative, Wegman's.
          I hear you asking -- isn't Wegman's a supermarket? -- I'll explain some other time.

1 comment:

  1. The Garbage Plate has a certain resemblance to Cincinnati Chili, which isn't much like chili in other parts of the country and was invented by Macedonian restaurateurs (Lisa Brown, take note). "Five-way" Cincy Chili involves chili, spaghetti, cheese, onions, and beans, and CC can also be served over a hot dog. The seasoning is also different--very little heat and a lot of pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, allspice, etc.).

    Anyway, I'll have to try a variant of the Garbage Plate on one of my Rochester trips. I had no idea!