I first heard about the news through a text from my husband: “Marie’s is closing.” I was bummed, so was he and our entire family.
In the center of Trumbull is where many of the shops and food spots in town are located. For almost 50 years Marie’s Sandwich Shop has been a place where people like to go for breakfast and lunch. Over the years we would meet up with friends and family for meals at Marie’s, and when my husband and I began dating years ago he would often bring me there for a breakfast date. We always liked to sit at the counter. My husband is the kind of guy who likes to sit at counters or bars to eat whenever possible. Me, on the other hand, I’m pretty short so counters and bar seating don’t always work for me. When your feet can’t reach the chair rungs it can get uncomfortable, but at Marie’s the counter seating was at a good height, and I liked sitting at the end where you could watch them cook your breakfast.
Marie’s was small, but cozy. If you went regularly enough you were remembered. If you grew up in Trumbull like my husband did, or lived there long enough like I have, you most likely would run into someone you knew at Marie’s, especially during breakfast time on the weekends when it was always busy. Marie’s was a reliable food spot where you knew your omlette would be made well and you’d be met with smiles from the staff and people you’d run into.
You see there wasn’t anything on the menu in particular that stood out for me, but it was a place I’d recommend over the years for the entire experience – for a hometown dining experience try Marie’s. My husband and his father would have father and son breakfasts there on Sunday mornings when he was a kid, and his uncle and cousin still did. My husband’s little cousin has a favorite waitress he likes to chat with at the counter each Sunday morning. So you could see how we were all saddened to hear Marie’s is closing its doors.
The news about Marie’s closing and a few dining experiences I had this past week got me thinking, but it took a little longer than usual to write this post. At one point I felt like Winnie the Pooh tapping myself on the head saying “Think, think, think.” I’m often inspired by articles and other things I read, and this topic is no different. Huffington Post posted an article recently about how The Best Restaurants Make You Feel Loved, and in it Anne Maxfield talks about how your dining experience is important from the moment you enter until the moment you leave a restaurant.
As soon as I read her words last month I instantly connected with the article, and as I was think, think, thinking I remembered her words because I felt a lot of love as a diner this past week. My husband and I ate out at several places – a few new places and a few trusted spots we frequent in our “restaurant rotation,” as I call it. Something I noticed in thinking about all the restaurants we visited this past week is that my favorite places, new or old, make me feel loved in some way. A friendly hello and a short chat with the owner, a kind wait staff willing to recommend things on the menu, a manager saving a food experience at our first visit to a restaurant that started off well but went downhill somewhere in the middle, all these things happened this past week and made me feel loved as a diner. In addition to very delicious food, these experiences make me want to return to these food spots. We all want to feel loved and our dining experiences are no exception. Those restaurants that give us a dining experience that makes us feel loved in addition to good food are those places which people talk about, and us foodies blog about.
My goal for my food blog is to share my excellent food experiences with you, and to be positive, inspiring, and fun. I use the word LOVE often in my writing, which I’m sure my faithful followers have noticed. And no, I’m not exaggerating when I use the word. From the very beginning when I decided I would begin blogging I also decided that my blog would only be positive. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not shy about saying when I don’t like something or letting friends know when an experience didn’t go as it should have, but I also believe that if you don’t have anything nice to say, you shouldn’t say anything at all. In other words, if I blog about a place, a food, a dining experience, then I loved my food experience on some level and the food spot showed me some love as a diner. Food makes me happy and I only want to spread happiness, so if I haven’t written about a place or food experience yet there’s only two possibilities: it’s either because it’s on my list of places to visit soon (I have to pace myself annddd I do want to stay in the same pant size) OR it’s because I didn’t have an excellent food experience worthy of me showing some love with a blog post.
What I’m trying to say is that the love is mutual, like any healthy and successful relationship. The love I give to a food spot or dining experience always begins with the love I first receive as a diner. Beyond the cooking of food, the love for the diner is shown in the entire dining experience. The first course really begins when you first walk in the door, doesn’t it?