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!

 

 


Bread Baking Classes Offered Oct. 21, Nov. 15

The University of Tennessee Extension will hold two Bread Baking classes this fall. Participants will learn basic bread baking techniques and science secrets. Instructors include a professional baker, a chemist and a full time mom who grinds her own wheat. They will make treats and healthy alternatives while demonstrating traditional mixing and kneading techniques as well as ... (click for more)

Warehouse Row Hosts Tailgate Party For Baylor McCallie Football Weekend

Warehouse Row will continue its Crafted by Southern Hands event series with a tailgate celebration highlighting high school football rivalries, Baylor and McCallie. The weekend festivities will begin Thursday, Oct. 2, from 5-8 p.m. with live music, food and drink from Jim ‘N Nick’s B-B-Q and Chattanooga Whiskey, a trunk show featuring Southern Proper apparel hosted by Onward Reserve ... (click for more)

Teen, 17, Charged With Aggravated Rape In Attack On 69-Year-Old North Chattanooga Runner

A 17-year-old has been charged with aggravated rape in connection with an attack on a 69-year-old runner in North Chattanooga on Monday morning. The teen was identified by Juvenile Court officials as Diontae Smartt. Authorities said he has given a confession. Smartt has a detention hearing Thursday at 12:30. The incident happened at approximately 7:30 a.m. ... (click for more)

Berke Implements New Pay Plan For Chattanooga Fire Department

Mayor Andy Berke joined the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) and leadership of the Chattanooga Fire Department to unveil the department’s new pay plan Wednesday afternoon. At a press conference at Fire Hall #1 on Main Street, Mayor Berke and IAFF Local 820 President Jack Thompson signed a memorandum of understanding which sets forth regular raises for fire ... (click for more)

Keep John Roberts, Commissioner Of Red Bank - And Response

It has been a week since the Red Bank Neighborhood Pride Association held their candidate forum at Red Bank Middle School. I was privileged to have been asked to moderate the affair. What follows is my interpretation of the current issues facing the citizens of Red Bank and, at the end, a summation of whom I feel should be elected and whom I will be voting for personally. First, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My October Garden

Hark! It is the first day of October and, as I make my monthly stroll through the garden, I find a growing numbers of leaves and acorns. Autumn leaves are beautiful while acorns are nuts, thus you will get the idea as we make our monthly awards: A PRETTY LEAF to Phil Hughes after the Minnesota Twins pitcher came within one inning of earning a $500,000 bonus this season. The deal ... (click for more)