At Ecorse Romulus
Date of visit: May 19, 2012
In spite of the ongoing reports of fat America, some places just seem to serve bigger and bigger sandwiches and meals. We’ve been to Tony’s in Birch Run and Bombers in Ypsilanti, both of which are guilty of keeping the styrofoam –take- out -box makers in business. In fact, I thought those two restaurants were the only ones that were the home of the original “I can’t believe I at the whole thing” meals until we stopped by the Wheat and Rye, in Romulus Michigan near Metro Airport.
I’ve been to the Wheat and Rye before, but not for food. It was about two years ago, when I was in a poker run that they sponsored for a local Motorcycle Club: there were great prizes too and my husband’s favorite: a bikini bike wash line. I don’t recall eating anything then, I may have had a cold beer, but that’s about it. I do recall going inside, it was early, mid-morning, they weren’t open for business just yet, but I recall the décor: a big dining area, bar and lots of TVs. Today we actually planned to eat here.
When we entered the Wheat and Rye, especially since the sun was so bright that day, was like entering a dark cave. In spite of my transition lenses, it took a few minutes to adjust to the ambiance of the room. I counted 6, but there may have been more, big screen TV’s hung from each wall and comer, broadcasting the same sports channel throughout the restaurant/bar. I suppose that would allow anyone, to view a screen and never miss a second of the digitized entertainment.
There were three of us this time: we were guided to the middle of the room, seated at a table for four. All the tables are made of light colored wood; mostly four seaters with one or two longer tables near the walls, for bigger parties. The tables are scattered about in one big dining room, which is decorated with neon signs, posters and of course the TVs. Typical bar ornamentation. The bar is lengthy, placed against the far wall. Patio dining was an option.
A party of 10 was seated to my left, beneath one of the TVs. They were eating what looked like a big pile of hamburgers, on my right one or two other tables were occupied, and then there was us. Wheat and Rye was not crowded at all, but, it was a late afternoon on a very hot and sunny Saturday.
Because it was late in the afternoon, any lunch would probably be our dinner so we considered, briefly , getting an appetizer. The appetizers & sides are together on the menu; from fried mushrooms to coleslaw but nothing looked particularly interesting so we skipped it. The meals are listed next.
There are 11 different types of burgers, well actually one type of burger with 11 different options. All burgers claimed to be ½ pound; a concept that probably started at a fast food joint as ½ pound of any meat is a lot for one sitting. They have seafood (the nearest ocean is how many miles?) and famous sandwiches, 22 famous ones. There’s also 8 mini sandwiches on the menu, which I should have considered but didn’t. Having not eaten breakfast ( a current theme for us), we decided to try one of the famous sandwiches, and didn’t split the order , as we always consider but rarely do, when dinning out.
My order was a Hot Pastrami on pumpernickel bun, coleslaw, Swiss cheese and Russian dressing. (yes it was a ½ pound of pastrami), with pickles on the side. No chips or French fries. My husband ordered his favorite standby – the Ruben. I don’t know why he orders Rubens because he always complains about them, as he’s told me he has had the ultimate best Ruben of all time, while stationed in England, RAF Alconbury sometime in the late 80”s. It must have been awesome sandwich if he remembers that – and this coming from a man who forgets to take out the garbage. As for me, I can’t remember what I ate for dinner last week, unless of course I write it down. I take a lot of notes when we eat out.
He ordered the Ruben – another Ruben quest with no good ending.
The Ruben he ordered boasted to be made with corned beef, swiss cheese & Russian dressing topped with sauerkraut on pumpernickel – not sure what to expect as far as portion size goes ordered that with fries.
Our dinner companion ordered one of the 11 hamburger selections.
When all the food arrived, I didn’t think we would have enough room on the table for all of it. The only way to describe the food is BIG FOOD. Similar to those two other restaurants- and of course you could only pick up a half of sandwich with two hands and that’s pushing it.
I didn’t brother eating the bread, it was too much to hold, so I only feasted on the Pastrami, which was okay (not New York deli, but okay), and the pickles, which were really good. The bread slices used for my husband sandwich could have been sliced again and maybe again, they were so thick… He actually didn’t like the bread, so he put it aside like I did. (I heard my grandmother in my mind: there’s starving children … ) but the blame on this one would be the restaurant they could have opted for normal sized sandwiches’. There was no clue on the (take out) menu that the food was piggy sized, as the prices were comparable for normal sized meals.
The side order of fries and coleslaw was enough to feed all three of us and some neighbors. Our friend had ordered fries with her meal so there was a difficult choice of what if anything to finish.
In the end we opted for a carry out box, it was styrofaom, ate all the pickles, I ate all the Pastrami no fries or coleslaw. My DH only had a few bites of the sandwich, ate all the fries and coleslaw. He said the corned beef was good, as was the cheese and kraut. He didn’t mention the dressing but said the Rebun was okay but nothing to write home about. We took enough corned beef home to make omelets the next day, two sandwiches for lunch, fed some to the dogs and tossed the rest.
Wheat and Rye is clean, big and inviting. The food was good, the bread was not. It is so much food, in fact one meal for two would suffice for a small family of three. And of course that would cut the bill considerably. It’s a good place for bikers to come and kick back, lots of parking, attentive wait staff, food is above average bar fare.…who could ask for more?
Total bill before tip $ 22.31