Over the years I’ve always enjoyed Denny’s restaurants. It was one of the few places I could count on ordering grits for breakfast. Traveling out of town on business, this national chain was a reliable haven for almost any meal time or nearly anytime of the day or night. This time Peg and I were on our way to Tacoma Musical Playhouse. Denny’s was only about a mile away on Sixth Avenue.
Things have change a bit, however. Although it was dinner time, the restaurant seemed a little deserted. There were may three or four tables in use. I already knew what Peg would be ordering, but she checked the menu thoroughly. She changed her mind several times before ordering the meatloaf, which I could have won money on if someone wanted me to place a bet on her choice. Meatloaf and baked potatoes was her constant birthday request as a child. The entrée comes with mashed potatoes, which can be easily substituted. She asked for zucchini squash and was well pleased with the side dish, herbed toasted French bread, perfectly browned hash browns, and the meatloaf itself. For Sunday breakfast she feasted on a meatloaf sandwich on toasted whole grain bread with fresh tomatoes and lettuce. She was extremely happy with both dinner and breakfast.
I ordered the new Super Slam with “all you can eat buttermilk pancakes.” My eggs were over-easy and perfect. My “burnt, burnt, burnt” request for hash browns was not delivered. It’s a very rare restaurant that grants my wish. The hash browns were okay. Actually, Peg’s were darker. The bacon (very thin) and the sausages (tiny) were a long way from what they used to be, but the “Slams” are so affordable it’s hard to complain.
I was surprised with the pancakes. They came with room temperature syrup. I frowned as I poured it over my two buttermilk cakes with a large glob of melting butter on them. I was surprised. The pancakes effectively warmed the syrup and blended well with the butter. I’ve been to many restaurants where the hotcakes aren’t warm enough to melt the butter, so this was a pleasant shocker. Although I could have ordered more pancakes, two were enough. They were good. But they were filling.
I had been staring at a half-page ad of Denny’s coupons for almost a week. It was just sitting on my desk. The coupons did their job. When I went to pay for breakfast I asked if any of the coupons would work for our dinner. I hadn’t bothered to read them. Server Scott looked over the coupons and said, “Yes, you can get 20% off your order.” I saved a little bit on the bill and was able to still give 20% as a tip. Scott suggested I go online and sign up for rewards. I could get 20% off again on my next order AND I can receive a free “slam” during my birthday month. It’s no Pacific Grill or Anthony’s, who also provide a birthday bonus, but a free meal is a free meal. I asked about grits just before we left. “Yes, but only until one in the afternoon.” That’s good enough for me . . . and a return trip. We had a nice meal followed by a fantastic performance at Tacoma Musical Playhouse. What a great combination dinner and night out!