Think back a few years. Do you have a place that was your go-to for great (or at least decent) food that is no longer around? You know what I am talking about. You probably ate there every single day, or you would at least drop in a few times a week to grab something to eat.
When I lived up in Charleston, IL, QQ Buffet was that place for me. It was a little Chinese-American buffet style restaurant that was practically next to Wal Mart so I would go in there many times for dinner before I went to work. Man, that place was amazing. And, you know what? I’m not so sure that it was the superior quality of the food. I mean, the food was fine but it wasn’t any better than any other Chinese buffet that I have ever been to. There was something else about the place. Perhaps it was the owner (not sure what his real name is but everyone called him Tony). He was always super friendly and his family was as well.
So, have you got that place in your head yet?
When I lived out in Virginia, my family loved to go to this place in Brookneal (I won’t name it because I don’t want to discredit their business). However, I found the place to be terrible. The food was no good and the service was poor. But, just up the road was another restaurant that I could eat at every single day. The Drug Store Grill was amazing. I would always get their Buffalo Chicken Salad and it never disappointed. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.
Yet, neither of these places qualify for this post because they are both still open. I’m talking about a restaurant that you can no longer frequent because it is no longer open.
So, when I was 18, I moved to Flora, IL. It’s a medium-sized town (probably 5,000 to 6,000 people) in Southern, IL. Good school. Great people. Fairly safe to live there. And, just down the road (maybe two blocks) from my apartment was Andy’s Meat Market. It was a small business in an odd part of town for a business to exist. It sat on the corner of a residential area and didn’t draw a lot of attention to itself.
Man, best sandwiches EVER!
I would go in there quite a bit and hit up the deli meat. This place was pretty close to the High School and all the students would walk over there to get lunch so you wanted to make sure you went early or waited until they were done but the food was great. But then again, maybe it wasn’t even the food. Maybe it was because it was so close to my house that it was convenient. Perhaps it was just the experience of frequenting a local business instead of feeding into a huge chain.
All I know now is that it’s not there anymore.
I mean, the building is still there. I think the Boy Scouts met there for a while. I’m not even certain what the building is used for now. I drive by it every time that I go to my mom’s house and once a year, the above picture shows up in my facebook memories. In 2017, it was my most commented on picture. Apparently, I was not the only one who enjoyed their lunch at Andy’s Meat Market.
Life is Strange. Live it Well.