Friday, January 20, 2012

Old Favorite Springfield Restaurant Oh Noes!


I'm planning a trip to back to my home area -- the I-44 corridor running between Lebanon, Missouri and Springfield, Missouri. I grew up in Lebanon, my parents have retired in Marshfield, and my brother lives in Springfield (I used to as well).

Part of any old home trip is deciding what restaurants to go to (the ones without equivalents in St. Louis, that is -- I've got a good cashew chicken source up here).

The one I've been missing most is Melter's, formerly known as Mighty Melt Sandwich and Spud Shop. they make the most killer sandwich ever. It's hard to describe.

The bread is sort of muffaletta-like, but not exactly (one legend I heard was that the place was founded by an unemployed Schlotzsky's crew after that chain went under). It comes in squares -- a small is two squares, a medium is four, a large is nine, or something like that. I'm a big eater, but I've never finished a large in one sitting, I'll put it that way. Anyway, it's a sort of spongy bread, and quite good.

In the middle, they put your choice of meats (sometimes I go with pastrami, sometimes a "combo" of three meats), lettuce, onions, mustard, cheese, then they melt the whole thing in an oven.

So anyway, I am not finding Melter's on the Internet, and I'm only finding Mighty Melt listed in Sedalia and Warrensburg, far away from where it used to be, and from where I'm going. Sad face! Anyone know if the restaurant or a successor is still in Springfield?

I am not, of course, entirely without options. A place in Lebanon called Mr. Ed's used to make similar sandwiches. It appears to be gone as well, but it looks like there's still a sandwich shop in that location called Ollie's. So maybe it's the same food and just a different name.

And if I can't get my Melter's sammich, well, there's always Crosstown Barbecue. Or McSalty's Pizza. Or George's Steakhouse, which used to be the go-to place after the bars closed. Or hell, I've been telling the kids about Lambert's for years, so maybe we'll have ourselves some throwed rolls.

I'll put Crosstown and McSalty's up against restaurants of their kind almost anywhere. And I doubt I'll be going hungry. But just in case, refresh my memory concerning other great places to eat in the general area..
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