The Greasy Spoon

As you travel Britain’s main roads, every few miles or so you’ll pass a convenient lay-by with a caravan, a shack, a portakabin – some less-than-permanent structure which has actually been there as long as anyone can remember.  Parked outside it are lorries, vans, cars – all empty, because their drivers are in the Greasy Spoon – that’s what these huts and caravans are affectionately called.

The unchanging menu at the greasy spoon.
The unchanging menu at the Greasy Spoon.

These truckers and travellers have gone in for an all-day breakfast.  The menu’s limited.  All that’s on offer are various combinations of bacon, sausage, eggs – with baked beans, grilled tomatoes, grilled mushrooms or bread on the side.  This is not Fine Dining.  The bread served here is not artisan-crafted from some small bakery using speciality organic stone-ground flour from the mill down the road.  It’s industrial strength pre-sliced pap.  I doubt if the pigs used for the sausages and bacon have truffled around in the woods looking for acorns, or been fed wholesome scraps from the farm. The baked beans come in catering-size cans.

One bacon sarnie.
One bacon sarnie.

But we’ve got into the habit, when the boys stay with us, of having lunch at a particular greasy spoon near Skipton.  What it lacks in finesse it makes up for by offering a really friendly welcome and rock-bottom prices.  We make our order, plonk ourselves down at one of the formica tables, and relish a rib-sticking calorie-fest which will keep our stomachs lined for an afternoon of fresh air and fun at nearby Brimham Rocks.  It comes under the heading of ‘Naughty but Nice.’*

Here we are.  Open dining at the Dalesway caff.  Only it was way too cold.  Everyone was inside that day in the fuggy warmth.
Here’s Alex showing off the open dining area at the Dalesway caff. Only it was way too cold. Everyone was inside that day in the fuggy warmth.

*Salman Rushdie coined this advertising slogan for Fresh Cream Cakes when he was working as a copywriter back in the 1970s.  Warning: Don’t Google this phrase unless you are on the look-out for sex toys or ‘adult-themed materials’.  You have been warned.

18 thoughts on “The Greasy Spoon”

  1. We came across a few of these in NZ. The one that comes to mind was a woman as old as Methuselah cooking mussels. It was called Nin’s Bin and on the east coast beside the sea. I’ll never forget it, the mussels were superb.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We call this sort of restaurant a greasy spoon, too! Here, they are more likely to be somewhat more permanent and also be called “diners” but they offer similar evil-but-yummy options. And, no, I won’t be googling “naughty but nice”!

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      1. I was born in Wales and my family emigrated to South Africa and then Canada. I went to Cardiff University for a year and lived with my grandparents in a then mining town (Abertridwr). I know eggs, beans, chips and bangers in all its various forms😜

        Liked by 1 person

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