Aretha Frankenstein’s – Not Scary After All

Sunday, February 24, 2013 - by Willie Mae

It has been in my mind to try Aretha Frankenstein’s on Tremont Street ever since Lois and I had visited it when it was too busy (and Lois was scared). We ended up going to Blue Plate Diner (who happens to sell Aretha Frankenstein’s pancakes). I knew I would probably have to go without my dear, scaredy-cat friend but then I got to thinking…

Lois and I have been friends since we both attended City High School and I knew a long time ago that if I was ever going to talk her into something; I had to keep just my mouth shut! I had to just drag her and tell her after we were already doing it.

Lois can be a little shy so when she got in the car and I did not ask her where she wanted to go; she kept quiet and just went along for the ride. We passed over the water and Lois seemed to enjoy the scenery. When we turned onto Beck Avenue, Lois hollered out, “I know where you are taking me! We’re going to that place I didn’t like!”

By the time she figured it out, I parked the car heading downhill in front of Aretha Frankenstein’s. Lois looked as if I betrayed her. I like to think I am a pretty sweet lady most of the time, but I couldn’t help laughing. I did what I have always done with Lois and told her to ‘just come on and watch your step’!

Lois followed along quietly and, when we got inside, she didn’t seem to be as afraid. They were not as busy as last time when there were people standing at the door waiting for a table and we were told to take any seat we’d like. There were four tables and a bar with monster barstools. Well, they weren’t really monsters. I feel as though I should clarify since the name could make you assume – they were just BIG!

We chose a table to the left and right away Adrianna gave us menus and took our drink order. Adrianna was ‘cool’. She had what youngsters call “ink” on her neck and she even had those weird ear things that stretch out your ears, but she was a pretty girl and had a wonderful personality. I do pretty well with ‘going with the flow’ so it didn’t offend me in the least (though, I will not be getting a tattoo myself, anytime soon).

I looked over at Lois and she was taking it all in. None of the chairs matched, the bar was made from beautiful antique wood and, yes, there was a bit of Frankenstein décor on the walls. Lois spied a picture on the wall behind me and said, “Oh, there’s my boyfriend!” I knew they didn’t have a picture of Phil, so I was curious and turned around to see.

Amongst all the weird stuff on the walls, there was a picture of Andy Griffith! I kid you not!  I had hoped that would make Lois more comfortable.

When we asked Adrianna about the food, she explained what they offered but she was very flexible to tell us we could ask for things we didn’t see in the choices. She was so pleasant and helpful.

Lois ordered Eggs & Bacon for $6.95 with a biscuit and, even though we didn’t see gravy on the menu – Adrianna told her she could have gravy too. I ordered a sandwich because it was late afternoon and I already had that in my mind. I got The Marilyn for $7.45 and, instead of chips, Adrianna said I could have the potatoes that they serve with breakfast. This place was so accommodating!

After ordering, Lois was still looking around and she said with a smile, “They really don’t have to worry about maintenance here, do they?” as she looked at the odds and end antique furnishings (I am sure they follow code, they just decorated with old eclectic things). Lois was really being a good sport and I could tell she was trying to ‘be cool’ with it all. Then Lois whispered, “Do you have your hand stuff?”

I handed her my sanitizing gel and our food arrived. Lois dropped all her inhibitions when she saw her breakfast just the way she liked it! After the waitress left, I whispered, “Wait, Lois! Let me get a picture!” She had her fork and knife in hand and was ready to dig in! Her biscuit was the biggest one I had ever seen and the apple-wood bacon was the first thing she grabbed and started making her yummy noises. She said her eggs were perfect.

My sandwich was hoagie-style and it not only looked delicious –  it smelled delicious! I was thrilled knowing that their food would be a hit! I really hate to say bad things about a place so I love it when I can sing the praises of good food somewhere. The flavors of The Marilyn blended so nicely - it had salami, honey ham, turkey and Swiss cheese, plus lettuce and tomato! It was a ‘monstrous’ sandwich that I knew I would not be able to finish.

From the time we came, the place began filling up at the bar and the tables. When Lois noticed the other three tables were full, she looked panic-stricken and asked, “Do you think they make you share tables?”

For the most part, I know Lois enjoyed her meal and the whole experience. She was less fearful as we walked to our car and she let out a giggle and said, “You tricked me.”

I giggled too and said, “But as always… it was for your own good”. And this place was good!



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