If its one long standing gripe I’ve had with Texas thus far it’s the seemingly statewide aversion to the classic 24 hour roadside diner.While I can get gut bomb tacos and a shiv to the neck at a shady gas station 24 hours a day, finding an acceptable greasy spoon in this state has proven a rather elusive challenge thus far.
Imagine my delight then, when 30 minutes outside of College Station in a postage stamp of a town called Hearne, I spotted a shimmering oasis of stainless steel and neon edged off the side of Texas State Highway 6.The vaporous glow of Penny’s Diner backlit plastic pierced the black Texas night, and our post game meal was quickly decided.(This was the meal following our Thanksgiving Day game at A&M vs. Texas)
On the inside the Penny’s is every bit as consistent as any diner loving patron would hope for, checkered flooring and stainless steel abound.The no frills menu was a lineup of breakfast, burgers and assorted classic diner fare dished out at affordable prices.I promptly ordered up a three meat egg scramble.The food was simple, quick, tasty and ample.The way honest diner food should be.I don’t think you could order wrong at this place, and Penny’s certainly satisfies.
What I was quite delighted to discover at Penny’s, however, was a true chocolate milkshake.Chocolate shakes are one of the great heavenly libations bestowed upon us, and I consider myself a purveyor of these creamy delights.Unfortunately, the understated art of the chocolate milkshake is, sadly, a dying one, and it’s a rare treat that I find an establishment that knows their way around a steel mixing cup.There are two critical subtleties to a real chocolate shake, both of which were found at Penny’s and make it worthy of my high praise.
1.The shake was made with real ice cream.It’s a shame I even have to mention this, but in our fast paced modern world it seems most shake vendors opt for the shortcut route of making their blasphemous shakes with soft serve ice cream product.
2.The chocolate shake was made with chocolate ice cream.The inferior, bastardized version that many of you may be familiar with involves vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce.How this offensive practice ever became commonplace is a mystery to me, but I for one consider it a pox on the shake world.I ordered a chocolate shake for a reason, and only chocolate ice cream and syrup will properly satiate my chocoholism.
So if you ever find yourself cruising down Highway 6 in Hearne, Texas with a hankering for some classic roadside diner fare, pull on in to Penny’s Diner and settle into a booth for a quick bite.Just don’t forget the chocolate shake…
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