Getting your kicks on Route 80, not Route 20, or Route 66

Fabius Christian Church

State Route 80 is my new U.S. Route 20. At least it was for a day.

According to our good friends at Wikipedia, state Route 80 is 127 miles long. U.S. Route 20 is 3,365 miles long, and is considered the longest road in the United States, a fact I just learned today.

So you really can’t compare the two roadways in terms of length;  it would be a bit like comparing Sarah Palin to Geraldine Ferraro in terms of gravitas. 

But both roads are the kind I love to travel through CNY, especially on days like Sunday, when the  “crisp” temperatures were made tolerable by bright sunshine and blue skies.

Wife L was understandably nervous when I said we would find somewhere to eat somewhere ‘west’ and somewhere along 80. We connected with “The 80,” my new cool moniker for my newly anointed cool road,  in New Woodstock, having enjoyed a drive past Eaton Reservoir.

I had thought Fabius might offer a locally owned restaurant, and we did pass by Anna’s Country Store, which promised fresh donuts. But we were looking for something more substantial. We passed by churches with their steeples framed in blue, barns that were working and barns that evoked another time, and fields dusted with snow with brown patches readying to ripen green.

But no restaurants or diners. Until we reached Tully, at the crossroad of The 80 and State Route 11. There we found it: The Elm Street Cafe. The diner/coffee shop/ice cream stand is tucked into the southwest corner of the intersection, across from a Curves fitness club, which I thought was appropriate mainly because one of the items listed for lunch at the Elm Street is  the Jenny Craig Dropout, which consists of a 7 oz. burger topped with three strips of bacon, double cheese, and an egg ( I mean it). It it served with home fries you can get smothered in country gravy and cheddar cheese. Whew.

But we were in breakfast mode, and the options were plentiful and appealing. The diner offers maple bacon pancakes, Belgian waffles, and thick French toast, in addition to interesting omelettes like the fajita, Greek, and veggie. They also offer vegetarian sausage and yogurt parfaits. 

I opted for the breakfast quesadilla, which was wonderfully crisp and filled with three scrambled eggs, sausage, peppers, onions, and cheese. It was served with a fresh salsa that was delicious and had a snap to it, along with sour cream. It was really very good. Just the right amount of food.

Breakfast quesadilla

Wife L had a half order of the Monte Cristo Eggs Benedict. It involves a thick slice of French toast topped with grilled ham, an over-easy egg, Swiss cheese, and a wonderful hollandaise sauce. The combination was wonderful, and cooked perfectly.

I had grabbed an ice cream menu from another table to look at, and our efficient waitress asked if we wanted any after our breakfast. It wasn’t the time, but there will be another trip as the selections were interesting, including Blue Goo, Flavor-burst, and Black Raspberry. There are shakes and floats and pies, as well.

The Elm Street Cafe, with its modern fresh-looking interior done up in blacks and silvers,  is open every day of the week.  It serves lunch and dinner in addition to its specialty drinks and coffees. There looked to be a nice selection of salads for lunch, along with burgers, homemade soups, and sandwiches. Sweet potato fries are available, one of my prerequisites.

We drove back along The 80 for awhile, eventually working our way to Route 20 in Nelson. And, lo and behold, the sun was still shining by the time we ventured back home.

The Elm Street Cafe


5 thoughts on “Getting your kicks on Route 80, not Route 20, or Route 66

    • Great! If you get to sample any ice cream during your stop, if the temperatures actually break 40 (!!!), please drop us another line and let us know how it was. I always like a new destination for a good chocolate shake in addition to good food.

    • We bumped into two guys last summer at the Purple Salamander restaurant in Morrisville who were riding their bikes the entire way on Route 20. That’s hardcore. Two buddies and I rode our bikes on Route 20 from Albany to Buffalo several years ago, and that was plenty hard enough.

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