Some of our breakfasts out just happen. Others are planned. M. arranged yesterday morning’s trip, but didn’t at first reveal our destination. He had his reason. Through the gray drizzles we drove northeast, up through Wind Gap, Pen Argyl, and Bangor. Soon we were driving into Portland.
From the road, the blue, white, and silver siding of the Portland Family Restaurant seemed to sparkle, particularly in the dreary summer rain. The fact that it was mid-morning and neither of us had yet gulped down any coffee made it doubly welcoming. As we entered the diner, we could already smell the aroma. We were greeted by a smiling hostess, and a round dessert case filled with appealing pastries. We asked for a booth and were escorted into the larger of two rooms where we were seated at the last available window booth. At a table nearby, a mom and dad with their four sons happily enjoyed pancakes, eggs, and bacon.
Over cups of steaming coffee, we scanned the plastic-covered menus. The Portland Diner has a broad selection of breakfast foods and specials – omelettes, French Toast, pancakes, corned beef hash, Delmonico steak and eggs, and even blintzes. An item called Holly French Toast caught my eye. “It’s a thicker French Toast,” said our waitress. How could I resist? M. ordered his much favored Eggs Benedict.
As we waited for our food, we chatted idly over the newspaper. Our anniversary is coming up soon, within a month. Being married for as many years as we have, there’s a comfort factor in conversation. We catch each others’ subtleties and hidden quips almost telepathically. It’s scary sometimes. And yet, amazingly, he can still surprise me.
The pleasant family of six at the table next to us were finishing their meals when our food arrived. I was awed by the sight of the three huge pieces of Holly French Toast dusted lightly with powdered sugar and surrounded by crispy browned bacon. After a quick click with my camera, I opened the syrup for dipping. Light, luscious, and flavorful! The saltiness of the bacon was a perfect complement. M.’s Eggs Benedict looked almost too perfect. The dish proved to be as good as it looked, he said. Our waitress kept our coffee cups and water glasses filled. Her friendly smile added to the homey atmosphere.
Our total bill came to less than $14 (plus tip) for M’s order of Eggs Benedict, homefries and juice, my Holly French Toast with a side order of bacon, and our two coffees. Quite reasonable, especially given the excellent quality of the food and service.
We walked out into the steamy August heat, got into our car, and left the parking lot. M. drove up the street to Duckloe Brothers’ Furniture, his purpose for the trip. Since we first visited their showroom some twenty years ago, we’ve talked of the exquisite simplicity of their New England Windsor Arm Chairs. And our anniversary is on the horizon.
The Portland Family Restaurant is located at 398 Delaware Avenue in Portland, PA. 570-897-5600. Stop by for an enjoyable meal. And afterward, wander over to Duckloe’s to see true American craftmanship.