Feb 15, 2022

Tops In Hazleton

Top Of The 80's
Hazleton, PA
We had a dinner-and-a-movie date for Valentine's Day.  I'll talk more about the movie later this week when I've had a little time to roll it over in my mind and maybe figure out what the hell it was about.  For right now, I want to show some love to a very nice restaurant that I've enjoyed throughout my life. 

Top Of The 80's has been in business in Hazleton for over 45 years.  It's a bit more expensive than the restaurants that my family would go to on a regular basis, but we did have dinner here several times; particularly when more of the extended family was in town.  It's still the first place in Hazleton that I think of to celebrate a special occasion.  It's a warm atmosphere with friendly people, delicious food, and an absolutely breathtaking view of the Sugarloaf valley.

I had a delicious 14 oz grilled ribeye with a big baked potato and rice pilaf for dinner.  My grandparents would pick up Delmonico steaks at Insalaco's just about every week when I was growing up.  Grandma had an electric frying pan that she'd plug in next to the kitchen table where she'd fry them up with butter.  I used to eat them right out of the pan, and the meat would almost melt in your mouth.

It's a very different world from the days when a regular working family could afford to get steak on a regular basis.  Prices are nowhere near as low as they were back in the 80's and they've skyrocketed even higher since the start of the pandemic, so a nice cut of meat like this is a special treat.  When I am fortunate enough to be able to enjoy one, it reminds me of those days in my grandmother's kitchen when the only price I ever had to worry about was the cost of a pack of baseball cards at Pantry Quik, or whether the hot new game at Aladdin's Castle was worth two tokens to play.

For dessert, I had a tiramisu that looked almost as good as it tasted.  I've been doing well on my diet, but it's Valentine's Day and I wasn't about to let my wife have dessert by herself or to skip something she wanted just because I wasn't getting one.  Besides, there aren't that many holidays where we go out to eat, so I can make an exception for those without sabotaging my weight loss goals.