You can’t drive west on I-40 in Arizona without stopping in Winslow, we were on our way to Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon and of course the stop was mandatory. We had planned only to stop for a couple of hours, but actually stayed several hours longer. and Yes, before you ask, we stood on the corner. There was a flat bed Ford, but unfortunately there was no girl in it taking a look at me. But that didn’t make any difference, I had a girl standing close by taking a look at me, like she has for over twenty years. Winslow capitalizes very well on the song “Take it Easy” recorded by The Eagles. The song written by Jackson Browne and Delbert Mcclinton is a song everyone knows, loves, hums and sings. The lyrics that made Winslow famous are;
Well, I’m a standing on a corner
in Winslow, Arizona
and such a fine sight to see
It’s a girl, my Lord, in a flatbed
Ford slowin’ down to take a look at me
(Writer(s): Jackson Browne, Delbert Ross Mcclinton Copyright: Music Corp. Of America Inc.)
So, we’ve stood on the corner, got a picture of it, and bought the tee shirt to prove it.
Finding La Posada
After dropping a boat load of dollars in the Route 66 gift shops, we decided to ride around and look at the sleepy little town of Winslow. There is a ton of history in the town with it having been a railroad town for so many years. We drove around town looking at the old buildings and as we came back into the downtown area from the opposite end we left from there was this enormous adobe hotel sitting up on a small rise. We had a “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” moment and I quickly turned the car around and pulled into the parking lot. We had found the La Posada Hotel and oh my what a sight it was. Grand in scale, grand in design and just a lovely place to be. We parked our car and made our way inside the front door thinking that there would be someone there that would want to know if we were checking in. There wasn’t anyone with in sight so we continued our exploration and went into the first lobby and started to look around, that’s when we discovered the Turquoise Room which is the hotel restaurant.
There were people sitting at tables so we went in and inquired about having lunch. The young lady told us that lunch service had not began yet and they were just finishing up the breakfast service and we would have to wait. And, she suggested we enjoy looking around the hotel which were words of delight to my ears. We looked at the lobby displayed and then I decided to go and do some further exploring, I went into different public areas, the art gallery and all around outside taking pictures as I went. Never once did anyone ask what I was doing or if I was staying there, in fact the staff would ask how I liked the building and then suggest some area that I didn’t know about to visit. They said they were photography friendly and encouraged people to take pictures and share with their friends. Now that a great attitude to have.
While I was out exploring, Debra had found a seat in the Lobby and when the young lady from the restaurant said our table was ready she called me and let me know to come back for lunch. The Turquoise Room is a special place and according to their website
Mary Jane Colter designed the private dining car for the Super Chief, a train that ran from Chicago to L.A. She dubbed the dining car The Turquoise Room, and the modern version of the restaurant, opened in 2000, replicated many of the original accents – green brocade booths and leather-and-wood chairs, to name a few. Just as elegant is The Turquoise Room’s menu. It features a variety of entrees that incorporate fresh ingredients flown in from as far away as Ninilchik, Alask, as well as plenty of homegrown items, among them piki bread made by local Hopi women.’” (source: theturquoiseroom.net)
We asked for and received a window table that looked out across the rear lawn toward the train tracks and the once thriving Winslow Sante Fe passenger depot. Truly a spot that we will always remember being such a beautiful place to have lunch.
The waitress brought our menus, took our drink orders and we studied the menu for something unusual. I decided on the The Box Car Burger (Harris Ranch Beef) ($10.00) which was a ½ LB of certified ground Angus chuck, fire grilled and served on a cornmeal Kaiser roll. Topped with red onions, lettuce, tomato, and John’s special sauce, I also opted for the grilled Poblano Chile add on ( $.75 ). Debra chose the The Arizona Reuben Sandwich, constructed with Lean pastrami, Swiss cheese, cooked sauerkraut and house-made chipotle aioli on caraway seed rye bread grilled and baked ($10.00)
The sandwiches didn’t take long to appear at the table in that we were ahead of the lunch crowd and the kitchen was cranking things out promptly. My Box Car Burger was a sight to behold and it lived up to its name because it was box car size burger. The the burger had been fire grilled as advertised on the menu and had just the right amount of crunch on the outside of the burger, while the inside remained full on juicy and well flavored. Then with the added kick of the grilled Poblano Chile it was “da bomb”. The Box Car Burger is definitely a signature burger for the Turquoise Room Restaurant.
Debra’s Arizona Reuben was a great take on the traditional Reuben sandwich. While the overall taste was very good, it didn’t quite match up to the Reuben she had at Kenny & Ziggy’s in Houston, TX. But, then again, it wasn’t suppose to since it was an Arizona Reuben. Unfortunately, the images of her sandwich was on the compact flash(CF) card that failed a couple of hours later and took some images with it. I had taken a few of my burger with my small pocket Canon camera and used the big Canon 5DMKII to take additional images of the food.
For dessert we went with the Crème Brule, which is rich and smooth egg custard topped with caramelized turbinado sugar, served with fresh raspberries and whipped cream. ($8.00) It was one more magnificent dessert and we had dueling spoons to see who could dig in the quickest. The Creme Brule was the best I had eaten since we were in New Orleans.
After we had finished our lunch we explored the hotel more and I even inquired about a room at the La Posada, their rates are actually within reason for a fine hotel. We decided that if we ever go back that way again we will most certainly plan to spend a couple of nights at the La Posada.
The Brown Bag Review Recommends:
The Brown Bag Review recommends that you dine at the Turquoise Room inside the La Posada Hotel, it will be a unique experience for you and your dining dollars will be well spent. We would even suggest that you stay at the La Posada because their breakfast is renown for it great variety and flavors.
Our Overall Rating –
Credit cards: Yes
Catering Service Available:
Recommendations: Box Car Burger
Suggestions: Go for breakfast
Ambiance: Resort casual
Service: Prompt & friendly
Vegetarian Friendly: Ask
Price Range: $$
Health Score: Unk
Smoke Free: Yes
Soft Drink Brand: Coke