Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Mama's, You Spoil Me

Our breakfast this past Sunday was not one for the faint of heart. I had heard good things about Mama's 39th Street diner (including its appearance on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives) and we finally made it. Mama's is located in the historic Nichols Lunch spot but is gaining a rep of it's's built quite the following since its original incarnation right up the street. The place was packed but we didn't wait long....but long enough to gape at the ginormous slabs of cake in the tall bakery case that originally came from Nichol's. I also appreciated the opportunity to survey the colorful crowd....hipsters, old school folks leftover from Nichol's and definitely some folks leftover from partying next door the night before. Mama's is located next to Missie B's, the longtime gay hotspot. That diverse crowd appears to permeate into Mama's and that adds an always-appreciated eccentricity to the sport of people-watching. It also makes for a diverse staff...replete with a server in drag. Our heavily tattooed server was a hoot...she reminded me of Lea DeLaria. The odd yet entertaining decor matches the feel of the place. The place is dotted with surreal art, including a strangely porcine Mona Lisa.

The rest of the experience conspired to make me feel old.....through no fault of Mama's. I'm in deep denial over needing bifocals but Mama's menu was so packed with details in small print, I couldn't read it and dammit, I just knew the problem was the lighting, somehow. The omelet list alone features 66 combinations. There's a list of breakfast "sammiches", pancakes, french toasts, scrambles, etc, etc. I was exhausted and overwhelmed and hadn't eaten a bite. I asked for a to-go menu so that I could revisit it later. When I did, I realized there's an affinity for New York delis as there were a plethora of offerings that sounded like they came straight out of Katz's Delicatessen. Back to the food...

I got a Mexican Scrambler which featured three eggs scrambled with Chorizo sausage, green peppers, tomatoes and homemade hash browns. I also, having heard such great talk about them, ordered one pancake. Their pancakes are made with fresh eggs, butter and malt and as I was about to discover, the size of cymbals. They, as well as the scrambler, were not only enormous, but crazy good. The only problem I had was the usual issue with over-sized breakfast doesn't really translate into decent leftovers.

My next twinge of aging involved bearing witness to the two young bucks chowing down next to us. Both were half my age and both were enjoying the hell out of their youthful metabolism...they tore up the most gut-busting menu offerings: deep-fried cinnamon rolls and deep-fried French toast and they were just getting started. Insolent whippersnappers with thirty-inch waist sizes.....Bah.

I look forward to returning to try out lunch, where one meal might easily feed me for the next few days... the portions are that big. By all means, check out Mama's but go in only-raw- veggies-and-water-for-a-week-before-visiting hungry.


Kristy said...

Hey there old boy! I'm lending you my reading glasses as my eye doctor told me I didn't need them HAHAHA!!(well, who is HE kidding anyway.) This post is GREAT. All the food is bigger than my head and that's saying a LOT cause we all know I have a noggin' the size of the Great Pumpkin. And of course you know that said noggin is filled only with mindless, trivial information that will gain me nothing in life but makes me a LOT of fun at parties. Tattooed drag queen as a server? I swear that is just a dream restaurant. We all know how I likes me "girls." The food looks heavenly and trust me, those young bucks will be in our shoes someday. In fact they probably won't be able to see theirs if they keep it up! LOL! Love you and thanks again for a great post!

Lisa said...

That sounds delicious!!! And that cake!! I'm going to have to make a trip down there!

Confounded Cook said...

Kristy, our tattooed server was NOT the drag queen...but colorful enough in her own way. Love ya back!

Linda C said...

So glad you made it down to Mamas. The last time I was there, my niece, Jessie, and I shared a half order of biscuits and gravy with browns (what they call their wonderful hash browns), and we couldn't eat it all. I know what you mean about breakfast not making good leftovers. I've left there full, but guilty several times - it's a shame to waste all that wonderful food. Love your posts, everyday I read one is a good day for me.

Post a Comment