We woke up in Providence, hungry. The night before, we had met a house full of lovely people, at a potluck we weren’t sure would even happen. Such a good night. But we were hungry, and we had to start driving again. Time for breakfast.
People often ask me how we find places where I can eat safely when we travel. It’s a combination of things, really. I ask on Twitter and Facebook. I look at Yelp. (But I always feel like I need a shower afterwards, from some of the terrible writing and vituperation there.) And mostly, I google everything until the name of a restaurant shows up in several searches and I start to sense, “Go there.”
But in Providence, it was pretty easy. Go to Nick’s on Broadway! In February, we three ate one of the best breakfasts of our lives at that extraordinary place. We were about to drive there when I googled one more time. Closed that day. Damn. Next on the list? Amy’s Place, which had the distinct advantage of being three minutes from our hotel. Why not? There would be hot coffee.
It turned out to be much better than that. The folks at Amy’s were friendly and completely conversant with how to feed me safely. They gave me something I have not eaten in a long time: cream cheese, lox, red onions, and capers. All on a dark, dense gluten-free bread. Who needs bagels?
(Well, we’re working on good gluten-free bagels for the next cookbook.)
That’s one of my favorite parts of traveling, the little surprising bites that arrive at the table in a cafe I’ve never seen before, and will probably never visit again. Those meals stay indelible in the mind.