I like to think of the mom and pop restaurants around my neighborhood as an extension of my kitchen. I can’t always find the time to cook, but with the help of some of the small eateries I do get to take home some awesome but reasonably priced meals.
One go-to place I can always count on is the Millyard Hamburger Steakhouse. It’s a real nondescript location, with about four tables inside and a help-yourself water station. But it has great hours, 8am to 9pm, and everything is cooked up fresh by the brother and sister team behind the counter and in the kitchen.
The menu is a conglomeration of local favorites. They prepare lots of Korean, Chinese and local foods. As their name suggests, the hamburger steak is really popular. It comes smothered in gravy with an egg on top and a side of rice and mac salad. Although I am not a usually a big fan of hamburger steak, I’ve found their careful preparation and seasoning extends to the cheeseburger deluxe sandwich as well. I can attest to the deliciousness of this handmade seasoned patty on a simple white bun with American cheese, complemented by crinkle cut fries.
Another favorite with my family is the lemon chicken and fried rice. The lemon chicken is done Chinese style with delectable breaded pieces of chicken smothered in a tangy lemon gravy. Fried rice here comes heavy with bacon and has a really delicious smoked flavor. We often get the mandu, handmade dumplings fried crispy and served with a dark soy-based dipping sauce. They offer it as a plate with rice and salad, or you can get it as a side with more pieces to share.
My usual lunch is bi bin bop, a Korean dish that features rice served with an array of fresh vegetables like pickled daikon, cucumber and sprouts, plus a side of chopped Korean barbeque chicken and a perfect fried egg on top.
The bi bim bap is fresh and balanced, the spicy garlicky chicken mellowed by fresh crisp veggies; the egg over the rice adds that perfect element of comfort food. I hear from my co-worker that the chow fun is really good, too. I haven’t eaten it, but I’ve seen it and been intrigued by its appetite-inducing combination of homemade-looking noodles, bean sprouts, hamburger and green onion. It’s definitely on the “to try” list for one of those days when I don’t feel like cooking and turn to my extended neighborhood kitchen. MTW