Sunday, July 29, 2007

Ed Debevic's, Chicago. Eat and Get Out.

Ed Debevics was the planned lunch place on our last full day there. We took the train to Millennium Park, and after visiting the Cultural Center, walked to Ed’s.

We asked for directions after the map got it completely wrong (or something); initially a guy in a city truck pointed us in the general direction, and told us it was about 15 minutes walk. After 15 minutes, I asked another passer by -he told us we should take a cab as it was at least 10 minutes in a cab. (Were people messing with me? Was it my Detroit Tigers shirt – the Tigers were in town to see the Sox?). Anyway, we made it eventually.

We walked in, and were promptly seated. “Are you guys really over here from Detroit?” our wonderful waitress bellowed, dressed in a 50’s shirt and leopard skin pants. We said yes. “I thought it smelt bad in here!! OK, whaddya want? Oh I betcha don’t know. Well don’t let me rush ya – I have all day” she said, eyeballs rolling towards the ceiling. She then threw some paper hats on the table, and wandered off. No order was taken.

See, that’s Ed Debevic’s. Eat and Get Out is the motto in this 50’s style diner. Rudeness is the order of the day. It’s all good clean abuse. And all very amusing.

She returned. “You still here? I guess ya want something to drink?” I asked for a beer. She looked at my family. “I can see why ya need one” she says.

“You need a haircut” she told my son. He was somewhat speechless.

We had regular food (got the order in eventually) – I had a burger, requested it medium “I guess so” she replied, obviously an inconvenience, (the burger, I must admit was outstanding), my wife had a turkey burger and the kids had some kid food. All pretty good.

An announcement came out over the PA. “Hey, I need to interrupt all ya lunches” the male voice boomed. “Not my fault. It’s that stupid girl over there has got her stupid birthday today” as he points at a laughing, blushing young lady. “Let’s all sing happy stupid birthday for stupid there and they you can all get on with your lunch”. So we did.

As we were eating, some James Brown came on the jukebox – which was then cranked up. The wait staff hopped up on the bar, shook their booties and danced along. All very, very different.

Our waitress then came back and threw various other insults at us; pretended to mess with my food, and done her best to annoy my son. Which included posing for a photo with him.

When she asked us were we done, and we said we were, she said. “Good. About time. Now pay and get out”. We did, and I genuinely thanked her.

We left laughing. We had good food and a lot of fun.

On the way out, another family, all sporting Detroit baseball gear were on the way in. I sure hope they had a sense of humor.


Jinx said...

Hi! I stumbled upon your blog about Ed Debevic's...I used to work at the one in Phoenix! It really took me back!

I was wondering if it would be okay to borrow your photo of the jukebox for my group forum?

Thanks for your consideration and your blog!


motorfamilymotorcityman said...

Hi Jinx!!!!!

Go right ahead - just tell people where you got it.



Ina said...

This took me straight back after I visited Ed's in Chicago. It was the best experience I've ever had. I loved all the sarcasm. Brilliant photos!

BoogieStik said...

We used to take abuse at the shop in Beverly Hills, where the waitresses would sit down and 'gab' wit ya. I recall one pulling her bubble gum out of her mouth and sticking it on my plate. Do you pull stunts like that at this location, or was it a SoCal thing?

Anonymous said...

I used to go to the one in LA, right there on restaurant row. It was truly a family favorite. I had been a number of times as it was a great place for celebration, and particularly great for kids. Remember the world's smallest ice cream sundae?
On one occasion, one of my nephews, came running out of the bathroom asking for 50 cents for the machine. Now I have never been in a restaurants mens room so naturally I was aprehensive but gave him the money anyway. He came out with a toy, a real toy! Any place that can foster so much fun and laughter should never ever close. I really miss it.

Anonymous said...

I hated Ed Debevic's. First let me say I didn't know they were supposed to be like that, but quickly figured it out when they started dancing. I was OK with it, but what I was not OK with, and what shouldn't be part of their act, is taking literally 15 minutes to come back to me after I finished eating. I had to go get somebody to tell them I want dessert. Did I mention I even told the guy in advanced that I would be getting dessert when I ordered my food? Gave me my burger, and I never saw him for the next 15-20 minutes, not for anything. Retarded if that's what they do all the time.

ChefKatherine said...

Hey there,

I found one your blog while doing research for a blog post at I am doing about Chicago restaurants with an intentionally rude staff. I was wondering if I could use one of your photos. I'll be sure to give you credit and post a link to this blog.