Sunday, October 4, 2009

Moral Outrage in Leslieville

Toronto is very much a brunch town. On the weekends, everyone stumbles out of bed and heads for that deliciously lazy hybrid meal named after breakfast and lunch. I was among the bleary eyed and hungry searching for sustenance on the weekend. My friend and I went to our usual place, Edward Levesque, but they had a lineup out the door, no thanks. And it was only noon. Their food is urbane and their Pinot Grigio cold - a couple of glasses make for a perfectly genteel brunch time buzz. I am also strangely attracted to the surly and unhappy servers and a menu that wittily discourages both children and cell phones in their place of business. Alas, we wandered down the road and found a textbook greasy spoon, the Leslieville Diner. I Urbanspooned the Diner on my iPhone and saw a couple of comments like 'terrible service' but 'reliable and average food'. We were getting pretty hungry so we went in. The vibe was strange and dingy in this small place and the servers seemed harried. We sat for a few minutes unnoticed, but my friend noticed that there was no liquor license and we both admitted to craving a spicy Ceaser. We started mulling over the possibility of leaving. After all, there were plenty of other places to dine along Queen Street. When we got up to leave, a server finally appeared and I said, "Sorry, we're going to leave. We see you don't have a liquor license." We had been temporarily seated next to a table of what I can only describe as crusty old farts. Four senior men who'd probably been sitting in the diner for the better part of the morning relaying useless facts back and forth. As we passed by their table to leave, one of them said loud enough for everyone to hear, but didn't address us directly, "It's a little early to start drinking don't you think?". We were impervious to this brunch time judgment hurled our way and tumbled out of the Diner laughing. We happened upon a most charming spot up the road at the OK Diner. We were seated immediately, brought two Ceasars and served a delightful little brunch. If I wanted judgment on a Sunday, I'd probably skip brunch and go to church.