Sunday, September 06, 2009

HFF on the Road: Jerome, AZ - Day 3

It's so rare in this post-iPhone UrbanSpoon App-age to dine at a restaurant that isn't on the e-radar SOMEWHERE. But I experienced such a phenomenon on our return trip from Jerome.

We opted to take the mountain highways back, as they run the hypotenuse from Jerome to Blythe. Two lane roads versus interstate, but there's a whole helluva lot more character. And I love the Highway 50 drive through the Sierra Nevadas, but US 60 through the Colorado Plateau is pretty goddamn beautiful. It takes you through the (relative) metropolis of Prescott but other than that you're dealing with ranches and creepy trailer park oases waiting for their snowbirds.

Prescott, Arizona came too early for us to be hungry, which was somewhat unfortunate as we discovered that it was basically the only place with multiple food options until, well, Palm Springs (not counting fast food options, naturally).

So we drove and drove and drove and drove and we got really fucking hungry and then we saw it, shimmering on the horizon, some sort of diner. We pulled off the freeway. We ate there.

The establishment in question is Steve & Shelley Bergeson's Ranch House. A thorough google search yielded nothing so it's a good thing I took a picture of the menu.

This was the sort of cash-only greasy spoon with a motorcycle-filled parking lot that exists in my imagination of Hollister is like. Once we found the door to get in, we were greeted warmly and found the place freaking packed. Which given its status as the only place for a home cooked meal for sixty miles makes sort of sense. The menu is a pretty typically diner selection of breakfast favorites with a vague white southwestern tinge.

Service was prompt and friendly and the food was good. My breakfast burrito was retardedly huge, loaded with eggs, potatoes, and peppers. Grandmaster A got a combo loaded with pancakes, eggs, bacon, and a biscuit/gravy combo. Biscuit & gravy was a real shining star, though the applewood bacon was also freaking tasty.

So really, in the world of random sit-down road trip lunhces, this was tops. My only complaint was as follows....

Somehow, our lunch which was advertised at costing ~$18 based on our listed prices ended up somehow coasting close to $40. Sure we got coffee. Sure we got "smothered" hash browns as our sides. But paying double what the listed menu price is makes me think that we were involved in a tourist scam.

And honestly? I don't object. This makes perfect sense. Why not scam douchebags who are cruising through your town to make a buck? Makes sense to me. It was the totally transparent nature of the upsell that pissed me off. "Do you want coffee?" Sure. "Do you want onions and peppers with your hashbrowns?" Fine. "Do you want to pay significantly more for nominal flavor enhancements to your dishes?" Why yes I do! Thanks for asking.

So, despite all the positives I was left with a bad taste in my mouth. It makes me less likely to go BACK to the Bergeson Ranch House on subsequent visits on Arizona highway 60....

Okay, not the most likely scenario, so maybe they're onto a new business model.

Other than being scammed and raped, it was a good restaurant, it's just disappointing that they would resort to such quotidian money stretching maneuvers.

As our day continued we ended up not being hungry again so we basically just kept driving and there isn't anything more to write about. Except for our evening Echo Park cocktail party courtesy of Pharmacie, so....

1 comment:

Noah said...

Quit complaining! You should be thanking your lucky stars they didn't drug you and feed you to a family of mutants living in the hills!