Iâ€™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 Union Gap, Washington.
Greetings from Union Gap, Washington
N 46Â° 34.128â€™ W 120Â° 28.390â€™ Elev. 960 feet
When I was a kid my mom used to say â€œGo to a truck stop if you want good food.â€ Her reasoning was that it must be good if all the truckers were eating there. Iâ€™ve mentioned this before only to correct the fallacy of that belief.
That the food is â€œautomaticallyâ€ good at a truck stop isnâ€™t remotely true. Indeed, the reason truckers eat at truck stops is quite simple: There is enough room to park their big-ass rigs! That is not to say there arenâ€™t notable exceptions where the food is really good.
The Gearjammer Restaurant, located in the Gearjammer Travel Plaza at Exit 36 on I-82, is definitely one of those notable exceptions. Iâ€™ve eaten here a number of times. Itâ€™s reasonably priced and the food is always quite good. Since I ended up stuck here for Thanksgiving, and I knew theyâ€™d be open, I took advantage of it.
The Thanksgiving Dinner Special consisted of generous portions of white and dark meat turkey with homemade gravy, dressing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and gravy, yams/sweet potatoes, corn, a roll, and a choice of soup or salad for $11.29.
I started with the soup du jour, potato. This was possibly the best potato soup Iâ€™ve ever eaten. Thick and creamy, with big pieces of potato and celery, and bits of bacon, this soup was incredible. In fact, both the waitress, Patty, and I agreed that it was â€œTo die for!â€ So good was it that Iâ€™ll now be calling them to see when they have it.
The plate of turkey with all the fixinâ€™s was huge â€” about twice as much as I could eat â€” and all of it incredibly tasty. I shouldâ€™ve asked the chef, Michael, when I talked to him but I think that, with the exception of the canned corn and yams, everything was homemade. He told me heâ€™d spent two days putting it together â€¦ and it tasted it.
The turkey was incredibly moist and topped with a great turkey gravy. And it was a lot of meat. The dressing also was really great and, thankfully, not full of sage, a spice I truly abhor. The mashed potatoes tasted homemade and had more of that great gravy on it. Although the yams were missing those crusty little melted marshmallows they were wonderful, too.
What can I say? The whole meal was so good that I had to personally thank Michael for all his hard work. He had definitely made my day by preparing such a tasty and satisfying traditional Thanksgiving dinner.
Because it wouldnâ€™t be Thanksgiving without it, I ordered a piece of pumpkin pie ($2.29) â€” my favorite â€” to go. And yes, it came with real whipped cream.
The whole meal was so huge that I ended up with an ample portion of what I consider to be the best part of Thanksgiving â€” leftovers. Unfortunately, I didnâ€™t have any bread to jam it all onto to make a grossly oversized sandwich. Still, it was fantastic all over again.
Apart from a lack of family and/or friends to share it with, the only thing missing from the meal was pitted black olives â€¦ and perhaps childrenâ€™s fingertips to attach them to.
I hope all of you enjoyed Thanksgiving dinners that were equally satisfying and hope that the rest of your holidays are likewise happy, healthy and suitably festive.
And so we roll.
The Gearjammer Restaurant, I-82 Exit 36, 2310 Rudkin Road, Union Gap, Washington
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.