Today we visit Souper Fry in Merrick. It is a healthy walk from the train station to the restaurant on Merrick Avenue, in the heart of the community. We bring with us a new adventurer, baby Matthew, who joined our pack at the beginning of February. Just a few weeks old, we are hoping he learns early a love of good food and the art of a life of adventure.
Souper Fry is owned by Merrick native and Culinary Institute trained Jonathan Passman. Their pride extends beyond the doors and their food and into the very heart of the town they call home. The eatery was built from the ground up in a space that used to house a laundromat and is a local favorite among high school students.
The menu is extensive. The bright and colorfully written food items draw contrast to the black menu board that stretches across the back wall. Their original “Wrapinis” are vast and an interesting read. We are told their names, such as Bad Ash, Minnewaska, and Jack and Boone; all represent inside jokes and a sense of humor and down to earth nature that seems to exude from the walls. All the food creations are original and made with only the best ingredients.
We arrive before the noon lunch rush and are encouraged to find our seats before the students arrive. Once the cars pull in to the little strip mall parking, we blink and are all at once surrounded by “kids” from the local high school. Some orders have been texted in ahead of time. Everyone seems to know each other and the two men behind the counter never seem to skip a beat with their group of well orchestrated maneuvers to feed the hungry teenagers.
The boys are in awe of the “big kids” and happily munch on their choices from the Kiddy Corner menu. The chicken digits are devoured and the house made fries soon follow. I order the Annie P, a wrapinis filled with sliced ham, turkey, swiss cheese, shredded lettuce and Dijonnaise. It comes warm and pressed and allows the sauce to ooze out with each bite. It is delicious and filling and makes me want to order another.
As soon as the students come, they quickly file out to return in time for their next class, and we are left with a steady stream of regulars who pop their heads in to say hello and sit down for a bite. We pick up our belongings and ever-growing pack of boys and make our way back to the station. We head home with another meal and adventure complete, which makes for a very happy day.