There’s this great scene in Dead Like Me, where Rube is filling in for the now-deceased short-order cook at Der Waffle Haus. The waitress comes up to the order console, punches the ticket, and explains that the customer wants the cheese melted on the bread. What ensues is one of those brilliant moments in television that sticks to your brain. The Patty Melt, Rube explains, is both descriptive of the preparation and the substance of the dish. The cheese is melted on the patty, then served on toasted rye. Not served with kraut. Not served with the cheese melted on the bread. To do so would be to compromise the values of the dish, of the very preparatory nature of the food itself. That would leave just a mere broken shell of a man,
So, off I went to the diner across from my coffeeshop office for my patty melt. With the greyness of winter settling in across DC, the trees threadbare, the wind blowing ever harsher, and the cold November nights on the horizon, the Patty Melt is a refuge against the cold days, and darn tasty to boot. With all of the compromise that happens in this town, stand firm in your desire for a hot and tasty patty melt. Go down to Luna in Dupont tonight, get a Patty Melt. Embrace the ideal.
This post appeared in its original form at DC Metblogs