Amtrak Dining

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ms garrison

Train Attendant
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Oct 26, 2018
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Well Mr. Devil... "they're regional"✔ and "I used to eat them as a kid✔(and still do)" and "everyone should try them.✔(at least one)" :) Guess it's a Southern thing... Grit's and Dr. Pepper ... I hold my mom responsible.
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Well Mr. Devil... "they're regional"✔ and "I used to eat them as a kid✔(and still do)" and "everyone should try them.✔(at least one)" :) Guess it's a Southern thing... Grit's and Dr. Pepper ... I hold my mom responsible.
View attachment 23287
Ok, another question about dining, specifically, how do people feel about eating in the dining car as opposed to having your food brought to your room. I'll be on the EB east bound in September and while I'm ok (I think) with being in the observation car as long as people are masked and maintaining social distance, the thought of eating with people who will of course be unmasked that will be assigned to my table is troubling. I'm fully vaccinated but also in the target age group. Has anyone done this recently, and if so how did it go? Thanks.
 

cassie225

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Louisiana
Grits and Dr Pepper!!! I like grits with bacon crumbled in them or cheese in them or sausage in them or eggs in them, my mom also used to smother chicken and put the chicken and gravy in them lol
 

jis

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Ok, another question about dining, specifically, how do people feel about eating in the dining car as opposed to having your food brought to your room. I'll be on the EB east bound in September and while I'm ok (I think) with being in the observation car as long as people are masked and maintaining social distance, the thought of eating with people who will of course be unmasked that will be assigned to my table is troubling. I'm fully vaccinated but also in the target age group. Has anyone done this recently, and if so how did it go? Thanks.
I have sat in teh Viewliner Diner of Silver Service between Florida and New York and consumed my Flex Meal Breakfast and Lunch. I am also fully vaccinated and in the target age group I had an entire table to myself since there is no shared table seating unless you wish to have someone join you of course. There was lot of space, very solid airflow, so it did not feel like an environment conducive to much transmission, and of course I did not catch anything either. I had my mask on until I started eating and put it back on as soon as I was done eating. This was a couple of months back now when the general transmission rate around the country was much higher than it is now.
 

AmtrakBlue

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I have sat in teh Viewliner Diner of Silver Service between Florida and New York and consumed my Flex Meal Breakfast and Lunch. I am also fully vaccinated and in the target age group I had an entire table to myself since there is no shared table seating unless you wish to have someone join you of course. There was lot of space, very solid airflow, so it did not feel like an environment conducive to much transmission, and of course I did not catch anything either. I had my mask on until I started eating and put it back on as soon as I was done eating. This was a couple of months back now when the general transmission rate around the country was much higher than it is now.
I'm pretty sure I've seen posts that the Empire Builder seating is back to communal. :(
 
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jis

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As long as Delta+ and Kappa are handled somewhat adequately by the mRNA vaccines, I guess it should be all right, and only the unvaccinated and immune compromised will continue to be in severe risk.
 

Dustyroad

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Does any one remember eating Mush as a kid. It was a rectangle slab that my mom cut into squares and fried. Then we would put butter and syrup (if we had it) or molasses on it. We thought it was great. It is a coarsely ground cornmeal made into polenta and boiled until it was thickened. I think you can still get it in larger stores. And yes, I do like grits also. On my trip this Sept, I will be eating in my roomette.
 

Bob Dylan

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Does any one remember eating Mush as a kid. It was a rectangle slab that my mom cut into squares and fried. Then we would put butter and syrup (if we had it) or molasses on it. We thought it was great. It is a coarsely ground cornmeal made into polenta and boiled until it was thickened. I think you can still get it in larger stores. And yes, I do like grits also. On my trip this Sept, I will be eating in my roomette.
We had that, my mom called it Scraple, it wasn't my favorite but was better than Cream of Wheat or Malto-Meal!😄
 

Sidney

OBS Chief
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Yep, they are back to communal seating. HOwever according to a report they have a few tables set aside to those who wish to dine alone/ with their party only.
Are they sitting four solo travelers to one table or just two across from each other?
 

crescent-zephyr

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Yep, they are back to communal seating. HOwever according to a report they have a few tables set aside to those who wish to dine alone/ with their party only.
I’m sure it would / will vary from crew to crew but there isn’t too much of a reason not to offer this if they aren’t going to allow coach passengers to use the diner.
 
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flitcraft

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I once spent three months in Jackson MS and often frequented the same diner for breakfast which offered several alternatives served with eggs: biscuits or toast, grits or hashbrowns, bacon or sausage. I always picked toast, hashbrowns, and bacon. "You're not from around here, are you?" I got asked. :) But eventually I learned to love cheese grits and shrimp and grits. So even a Yankee can learn to like grits...
 

Tlcooper93

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I spoke with the SCA on the Silver Meteor, and he said that traditional diner is indeed returning to eastern LD trains (forgive me, I didn't read all 80 pages of this topic, so I'm sure this is somewhere). Its nice to know that eventually it will happen.

He said that hiring all of the people necesary to make traditional dining happen, along with planning all of this is the reason for the likely year long delay.
 

jis

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I spoke with the SCA on the Silver Meteor, and he said that traditional diner is indeed returning to eastern LD trains (forgive me, I didn't read all 80 pages of this topic, so I'm sure this is somewhere). Its nice to know that eventually it will happen.

He said that hiring all of the people necesary to make traditional dining happen, along with planning all of this is the reason for the likely year long delay.
That is totally consistent with what I have heard from folks at RPA. One thing that is yet to be determined is what "Traditional Dining" will look like on the Eastern trains. The general sense at present is it will probably be somewhat less elaborate than those on the so called "Experiential" Western trains. Only time will tell.
 

Tlcooper93

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That is totally consistent with what I have heard from folks at RPA. One thing that is yet to be determined is what "Traditional Dining" will look like on the Eastern trains. The general sense at present is it will probably be somewhat less elaborate than those on the so called "Experiential" Western trains. Only time will tell.
Anything is better than what they currently offer...
I'd be happy with roughly half of the menu they offer on Western LD menus. What I think would be really nice is a real breakfast with the usual three egg omlette offering, and a real dinner. Lunch could be largely scaled back. Most eastern trains are only 1 night, so it doesn't need to be too elaborate.
 

jis

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Anything is better than what they currently offer...
I'd be happy with roughly half of the menu they offer on Western LD menus. What I think would be really nice is a real breakfast with the usual three egg omlette offering, and a real dinner. Lunch could be largely scaled back. Most eastern trains are only 1 night, so it doesn't need to be too elaborate.
I think all Eastern LD trains are one night trains, unless immensely blessed by the high level of CSX or NS competence on a specific journey. 🤷‍♂️
 

Brian Battuello

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Speaking strictly for myself I very much enjoyed communal dining and have had many wonderful conversations with strangers. I completely respect anyone who is still concerned and would prefer to eat at their own table or in their room.

My single exception was when I was once seated with a young mother and two children who were completely unsupervised terrors. 30 seconds after we sat down some table object went flying in many directions and I could not imagine what it would be like to be there when actual liquids arrived.

I gave the attendant my best smile and asked if there was any way I could receive an alternate accommodation. He assessed the situation and immediately moved me.
 

Manny T

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"...there are two factors that differentiate grits from polenta: the type and texture of the corn.

"While grits can be made with yellow corn, white corn, or hominy, polenta is typically made with yellow corn. In terms of texture, ground corn can vary greatly in consistency. Cornmeal has the finest texture, making it a popular choice for baked goods like cornbread. Grits vary in consistency—instant grits have a finely-ground texture, while stone-ground grits are thicker and toothier—but generally, grits have a slightly thicker texture than cornmeal, yet are still loose enough to form a porridge-like consistency when cooked. Polenta, however, is much coarser than grits, often cooked to a thick, risotto-like texture or even formed into cakes." What’s The Difference Between Polenta and Grits?

As a northerner, I began eating grits on a vacation to Texas and enjoyed them. The versions I find up north and on Amtrak are different, both in terms of texture, seasoning and yes, grittiness, but still enjoyable.
 
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I love corn but do not care for grits or polenta. And I truly love potatoes with eggs at breakfast.

So a perfect breakfast for me would be eggs, potatoes, and corn bread.

Or spoonbread—anyone remember that from the brunch buffets in the “eat til you stuff yourself” days before we all started thinking healthier?

It was made of corn, I believe, but very sweet, like dessert, and had about a zillion calories.
 
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