Saturday, March 12, 2011

Joe's Coffee Shop

To Improve People's Stupidity?*

(Once again, no official web-site/on-line menu.)

There is absolutely nothing special about Joe's Coffee Shop, and that is not really a bad thing, Martha. It is your quintessential "greasy spoon diner" (just with cleaner silverware); no-frills what-so-ever, just good food.

Joe's Coffee Shop is a little local diner-place on Geary Boulevard in the way-Outer Richmond**; they only have eight counter seats and additional table seating for another fourteen people. What I like about this place (and this is the first time I have ever had breakfast there; I have had lunch there a few times only) is that they open up at 7:00am, and you'll never have a half-hour (or more) wait lined up out the door and half-way down the block. They seem to do a good local neighborhood (because those foreign neighborhoods are such a pain?) business; while I was sitting there, they greeted several regulars by name. (I was fully expecting "Norm!" to come in any time and take up the end stool at the counter.)

Joe's happens to be one of the closest places to my apartment, just seven blocks downhill (but it really seems more like ten blocks back up the steep hill). They are more than likely a Chinese family-owned business (well, I only hope they are Chinese as I told them
Xièxiè when I was leaving, by that time it was already too late for them to spit in my food anyway). They have probably been in the same location for more than 30 years (well, I know they have been there since at least December 1986 when I first moved into the neighborhood).

Big Heart Video Cafe, which has been closed for several months now, is located just a few blocks down on Geary; it was one of the only other local dinerish places close by on Geary, and they used to be open 24 hours a day. I never had breakfast there, but I had eaten lunch/dinner there several times and I had a few "after hours" meals on my way home from bars and clubs. I don't know why they closed, perhaps NETFLIX killed the Video Cafe?!

Joe's really has no specials board, just a standard breakfast-lunch menu to order from. I ordered the Joe's Scramble ~ Ground beef (skipped this ingredient, Mr. Way), mushrooms (sorry, Mr. Way, this I kept in), onions, and spinach; served with hash browns and choice of toast (sourdough was my choice today). This was made with a pile of fresh spinach. I watched (whom I assumed was) Joe making it in the little backroom kitchen and he put handfuls of the green stuff in it. They make good, crispy hash browns, too. I also had a cuppa the house coffee, it wasn't very good, but it was bottomless as they kept on refilling it for me. I like that they offer both home fries or hash browns on the menu (and I am sure you could even substitute French fries if you wanted).

Oops, my error! I forgot to ask for the scramble without the ground beef at first (I just assumed they could read my mind) and had to send it back to be remade (and if any spitting in my food was to be done, then would have been the perfect time; but, like I said before, I watched Joe ~ very carefully ~ making my meal). The waitress/owner(?) was not too pleased with me… sorry! The entire breakfast with tax came up to under $9.00, so to make up for my gaffe, I actually left a brand new Abe Lincoln for the (over)tip.

Their condimentary*** supplements are: Tabasco®, Crystal®, and a Sriracha-style hot sauce. I kinda figured they would not have that good of a selection and had come prepared with one of my current favourites; I went with some Palo Alto Fire Fighters Pepper Sauce (Thanks again, Amster!) on the scramble and some HP® Sauce on the hash browns (this would have been the perfect opportunity to have added some to the coffee, too, it really couldn't have hurt any, Colin).

As their coffee quality was just coffee, I felt it necessary to get another cuppa at a new coffee shop on the corner, LOL**** Cafe. The coffee was better, but not much. LOL Cafe doesn't have a breakfast menu yet; they just do pastries and coffee. I had eaten there before, as they have some pretty good vegetarian sandwich selections. My recommendation: skip the coffee and order the Banana Chai Smoothie (or another drink special), I had that one before and it was pretty good.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Joe's Scramble ~ 5.9; Joe's Coffee ~ 5.0; LOL Cafe Coffee ~ 5.5; LOL Banana Chai Smoothie ~ 6.6

*(Not really a stupid cunning linguist pointer of the day, more like just a stupid etymological pointer:

I had always heard that the word "tip"or "tips", as a gratuity, came from an enterprising barmaid on the old Barbary Coast of San Francisco. She was tired of being hassled by all the bar patrons to hurry up their orders and came up with a jar that read "To Insure Prompt Service" ~ "T.I.P.S". I like this version of the word origin.

However, according to Wikipedia:

"There are common inaccurate claims that 'tip' (or 'tips') is an acronym for a phrase such as 'To Insure Prompt Service', 'To Insure Proper Service', 'To Improve Performance', 'To Inspire Promptness' or 'To Insure Promptness'. These false backronyms contradict the verifiable etymology, as follows.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word tip originated as a slang term, and its etymology is unclear. The term in the sense of 'to give a gratuity' first appeared in the 18th century. It derived from an earlier sense of tip, meaning 'to give; to hand, pass', which originated in the rogues' cant in the 17th century. This sense may have derived from the 16th-century tip meaning 'to strike or hit smartly but lightly' (which may have derived from the Low German tippen, 'to tap'), but this derivation is 'very uncertain'."

Now who you gonna believe, some over-worked wench or stupid Wikipedia and the Oxford English Dictionary? You know they don't even know how to speak real 'merican over in Oxfordland.)

**(I am not sure if I have ever given a brief history of the Richmond District. As I am pretty lazy and don't feel like retyping this:,_San_Francisco

Okay, so maybe Wikipedia isn't that stupid after all, but I still say them Oxfordians are a buncha snooty pooftahs, Bruce!)

***(I actually thought I was being clever by coming up with this portmanteau word, but just do a Google-search on it and you will be surprised to see that there are many more idiots out there that have been using it for years. My references don't even come up for several pages.)

****(Anyone that knows me, knows how much I loathe this stupid Intro-Nety expression, but that is a rant for another whole 'blog-entry.)

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