Monday, February 21, 2011

Is there a better combination than cheeseburgers and beer?

When I was 15 or so, I went through a period when I decided I wanted to be a vegetarian.  My parents were very supportive of my decision, and my mom even went so far as to borrow some books about the veg lifestyle from a friend.  She was concerned that I wasn't going to get enough protein (a valid concern, as I'm not much of a fan of beans, and tofu was just not working out for me).  At any rate, Mom went as far as to buy a box of veggie burgers so I wouldn't feel left out while the rest of the family was eating nice juicy hamburgers.  Yeah...didn't so much work. My vegetarianism lasted about a week, until I was DYING for a cheeseburger.  So much for that experiment.  So why, you ask, did I relate this anecdote?  Because on Saturday night, I experienced the same sort of craving, and knew I absolutely had to have a cheeseburger.  So I did.

After a long day spent in the sunshine at a baseball game, I grabbed three friends and headed to Yesterdays, one of my favorite spots in Columbia.  When people unfamiliar with Columbia come into town, the first place that I suggest we eat is Yesterdays.  They have a great menu, that offers good American cuisine.  They're exceptionally well priced (dinner for four, including a handful of beers, was still only about $60), and the food is consistently good.  

We didn't really branch out too much when it came to our dinner choices.  A got the London Broil with brown gravy and a double side of mac & cheese.  I should note that Yesterday's has some of the greatest mac & cheese that I have ever tasted.  According to A, it wasn't quite up to par on Saturday night, but still worthy of having a double helping (the London Broil comes with 2 sides, and it's fairly common for people to order a double side of mac & cheese).  The London Broil, was, by all accounts, delicious - cooked a perfect medium rare.

Tell me that Mac & Cheese doesn't look fabulous?
Like I said before, I was dying for a cheeseburger.  I had never had a burger at Yesterdays before, but I counted on it being as good as the rest of their food.  My two other friends, M & L, also decided that cheeseburgers would be absolutely perfect for dinner.

L was a little different from M & I, and she ordered the Pimento Cheese & Jalapeno burger with a side of fries.  I'm not a huge pimento cheese fan, but this looked great, and L really enjoyed it.

I love that you can see the cheese oozing out on the right side.
 M and I both ordered the Swiss Cheese & Mushroom burger with bacon.  I also swapped out my cheese for provolone.  It was exactly what I wanted.  As I've mentioned multiple times, I really think that everything is better with mushrooms.  And bacon never hurts either.

Paired with fries & a crisp pickle?  How could this possibly be bad?
One of the reasons I always take out-of-towners to Yesterdays is because the restaurant has a great atmosphere with great food and pretty awesome service.  It's family friendly - there are actually two sections to the restaurant, a dining room and then the bar area, so you can sit wherever you feel is most appropriate.  My friends and I have been to Yesterdays for many birthdays, casual dinners, pre-wedding festivities, or even just for a drink.  Their regular menu is spectacular, but always make sure to take a look at the daily specials.  

And did I mention that the staff are super friendly?  They're always willing to give input on the menu items (that's how I once ended up with the jambalaya that was on special....definitely a good decision), and they're very solicitous without being intrusive.  One time I was there for lunch, and went out to my car, only to discover a flat tire.  Luckily, one of Yesterdays owner was in the parking lot.  He tried to reinflate my tire for me, but when that didn't work, he changed my tire for me and recommended a tire shop in town where I could get a good deal.  We ended up talking for awhile, and it turns out we are both from the same hometown.  Which wouldn't be unusual, but having two native Pennsylvanians end up in South Carolina is a little bizarre.  At any rate.  There are good people at Yesterdays, and maybe the only thing that outshines them is the fabulous food.
Final Rating

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