I’m happy to have Tio Wally (long-time Me So Hungry reader) aboard to send in his eating adventures from across America. Here he is in Milton, Pennsylvania.
Greetings from Milton, Pennsylvania
N 40° 57.850’ W 076° 50.540’ Elev. 485 ft.
Ah, Pennsylvania. Home of the Liberty Bell, which, by the way, is cracked not because it was fervently rung to celebrate “freedom” but, rather, was a flawed cast, defective. So much for iconic bells. And so was my meal at Good Wil’s Restaurant, Bakery & Creamery in Milton. Flawed and mostly defective.
At Good Wil’s I ordered, with bated breath, a Ham Pot Pie. It was on the menu, printed right there for all to read. A regular menu item! It’s got to be good. I was excited: This is going to be great! After all, What is a pot pie? It’s a pie: crust top and bottom and filled with … whatever. Well, not so much at Good Wil’s. Actually, not at all.
At Good Wil’s I was served a bowl of gummy, grammar school paste-worthy pieces of … crap, with a little bland (boiled?) ham thrown in to break up the visual desert of the tasteless bowl of muck. I’d seen these rubbery, gummy squares of “noodles” elsewhere but they were always pawned off as “dumplings”, which they also are not. Noodles are noodles, dumplings are dumplings, and dumplings are never square. Flat is impossible in the dumpling world, just as crust is a must for pies. Suffice to say, it was not a pot pie, much less a “ham” pot pie.
I was told later that the pile of paste masquerading as pot pie is a Dutch thing. Fine. But where’s the pie? Why in the hell are they calling it a “pie” when there is no pie? This is wrong, wrong, wrong. Sinfully wrong.
Rather than bitch more, I’ll say this: The Ham Pot Pie at Good Wil’s would make for a great source of glue for any five-year-old’s arts-and-crafts project; any self-respecting 8-year-old would reject it as an unsuitable adhesive posthaste. Other than the fact that it was so bland, so completely devoid of flavor that even a Chrysler Building-size pepper mill couldn’t redeem it, it wasn’t completely inedible. But I say that only because I was starving, and … it came with two sides.
I chose Baked Lima Beans and Harvard Beets as my sides. The baked lima beans were another Dutch treat (read: surprise). I thought they’d be oven-baked or something unusual. No. They were baked as in “baked beans.” They were okay but, sheesh, what a waste of perfectly good lima beans.
The “Harvard” Beets, however, were awesome. They serve beets warm in the Northeast — I don’t know why — and I love ‘em. I have a thing about certain foods and beets are one of them. There simply is no way to prepare beets incorrectly. (I’ve thought about frying them.) Serve them warm, cold, call them “Harvard” or “Yale”, it doesn’t matter: They’re beets,which can’t be beat! No wrong can possibly be done.
But the real redeemer of my visit to Good Wil’s was this: I was walking back from the restroom and noticed, in the pie case, a little sign that read: Rice Pudding $1.99. The rice pudding appeared to be in giant sundae cups. I figured it was some mistake. But no.
Rice pudding is hard to find. Homemade rice pudding is nonexistent. You never see it. Moreover, I had a choice: with or without raisins. I went with the raisins. It came generously topped with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon, and was truly awesome. Heck, it almost made up for the fact that I was sold a phony Ham Pot Pie with little ham, no crust, but plenty of paste. Almost.
And so we roll.
Good Wil’s Restaurant, Bakery & Creamery, 24 Weavers Lane, Milton, Pennsylvania
Tio Wally pilots the 75-foot, 40-ton(max) land yacht SS Me So Hungry. He reports on road food from around the country whenever parking and InterTube connections permit.