JJ's Hall of Fame : Gary's Handy Lunch, Newport, RI
Went to this place just about every day when i lived in Newport, RI in the early 90's. One of my absolute favorite places in the world. Great coffee, satsfying (and hangover curing) omelettes, crisp home fries and yes - ice cold coffee milk, the state drink of Rhode Island. The best thing about Gary's? The service. Kind, caring, friendly and good natured - even flirty at times! Yet quick-witted, abrupt and appropriately surly when called for. I learned alot by just watching. Once grillman Joel even lent me his pickup truck when my car got towed and i couldn't afford to pay the ticket. Of course, they gave me a bunch of crap about being broke, but that goes with the territory. Over the three years I lived there, they really were like family to me.
I went in last weekend 20 years later and the same folks were there. I was so happy to see them and to once again devour a 'sausage mushroom and cheese omelet with home fries, wheat toast and coffee.' It is very much a family place and one I hold in extremely high esteem. JJ's owes quite a lot to Gary's Handy Lunch. Whether they know it or not.