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Anorak | 1974: Truck & Bus Transportation reviews Bimbo’s

1974: Truck & Bus Transportation reviews Bimbo’s

by | 25th, January 2013

bimbo bargo 1974: Truck & Bus Transportation reviews Bimbos

FOOD has become such a hot topic in the rich West that we are offended by cheap protein in cheap meat products, and hipsters take photos of fine dining meals for tasteless blogs. Once upon a time, it was different. In 1974 Australia, for instance, Bluey Tucker used to write food reviews for Truck & Bus Transportation.

The May 1974 issue told us about Bimbo’s eatery in Bargo:

Bimbo’s is one of the old-timers among the eating places along the Hume Highway. It’s at Bargo, about 60 miles out of Sydney. The roadhouse is close to the highway but there’s a huge parking area alongside, and getting off the road is no problem. Day or night, you’ll always find a couple of rigs parked there. 

Into Bimbo’s I waltzed. The restaurant is big, much bigger than you’d reckon from the outside. There were eight blokes in blue singlets demolishing T-bones when I arrived and yet the joint seemed empty. I counted seats for 58 at 26 tables. Everything looked bright and clean. The tables were Formica and chrome and the floor was vinyl squares. 

It was in the middle of the day and the room was good and airy, helped by the big windows. They give you a clear view of the highway and the parking lot, so you’re the first to know if someone tries to knock off your rig. 

A pleasant woman with big brown eyes and arched eyebrows came up and gave me the menu. She reminded me of the mother of an old girlfriend of mine and I didn’t know whether to feel hungry or guilty. 

Anyhow the menu was huge. The sheila was back in a flash, because speed is what Bimbo’s is all about, but you’d need to do a course in speed reading to get through all the items. There must be a hundred of them. I had time to see you could get breakfast food and two soups, and she was saying What would you like. By golly she reminded me of my girlfriend’s old woman, except she knew what I would like and did her darndest to see I didn’t get it. Still, that was a lot of miles ago. 

I said What’s your best steak and she said T-bone and solved a lot of problems. I’d joined another bloke at the table and he was a bit more fastidious. “They serve Chinese meals,” he said brightly and then ordered a salmon salad, which shows you the sort of mind he must have.

The sheila asked me if I wanted my steak with salad or vegetables, and I said salad. So she brought vegetables. She even acted like that other sort! With the meal came a huge helping of peas, diced carrots and mashed potatoes burying the T-bone. 

The steak was tough. I tried to cut it without much luck and the cove opposite gave me his knife, which had a bit of edge left on it. It was better, but I had to work hard on the meat. Still, there was plenty of it. You’d never starve at Bimbo’s. The Chinese food fancier did better with his salmon salad. He got a whole tin of red salmon on his plate and enough salad to suggest the cook was trying to clear the refrigerator so he could put the beer in. He finished the salmon a long time before I knocked off my last bit of steak. It was tasty but just didn’t like the idea of being sliced or chewed. The steak cost $1.70 and the salmon salad $1.50.

I had a milk shake for 22 cents and a double ice cream with flavouring for 15 cents. Both items were good and the ice cream acted like cold putty, filling the grooves the meat had cut in my throat. 

Maybe I just struck a bad day. I’ll go back, because everything else I liked, and just to be reminded of an old flame gave me something to think about for the rest of the journey.

Bimbo’s, Bargo. 24 hour service. Toilets. Shower block. Parking – huge area. Distillate. Ice. TV. Motel accommodation alongside. No juke box. Not air conditioned.

Spotter



Posted: 25th, January 2013 | In: Flashback, The Consumer Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink

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