“It’s the Veggie Burger Lady!”

The Hilltop Restaurant, L'Anse, MI

I like to imagine I’m not predictable.  That you couldn’t guess in a thousand years what I’d do, what I’d think, what I’d eat.

Alas!

This fantasy was busted recently.  At the Hilltop Restaurant in L’Anse.  Barry and I wandered in for dinner.  We don’t eat out there too often–but maybe once every month or so.

The restaurant itself--home of the Famous Sweet Roll

We sat at a table.  Opened our menus.

What to order, what to order?

Of course, I order a Veggie Burger.  Of course, Barry orders the salad bar.  We’re as predictable as the sun rising in the east.

Please check out the menu.

When, suddenly, from across the restaurant, a young waiter exclaims to a nearby server:  “Hey, it’s the Veggie Burger Lady!”

Mmmm....veggie burger....

It kind of makes you want to hide under the table.

To wish you ordered hamburgers or fish platters like the rest of the restaurant-goers. 

But, no.  I am suddenly baptized as the “Veggie Burger Lady.” 

Gosh.  Sigh.  Should it be spinach salad next time?

Famous Hilltop roll! (Size of half a bread basket.)

But, darn it all, I LIKE Veggie Burgers.  I just don’t like being this predictable that a server can point you out of a line-up.

(These Hilltop Veggie Burgers are especially tasty.  I think I’ve identified the secret ingredient–even though I’m not sure they make these locally at the restaurant.  They may be imported.  I suspect–am 75% sure–that the burgers are studded with diced water chestnuts.  That gives them a nice satisfying crunch.  Have even added water chestnuts to our own homemade veggie burgers.  Yum.)

Cashier kindly poses with famous rolls.

Of course, many visitors to the Hilltop Restaurant are aiming for their famous sweet rolls.  These sweet rolls are so big you can’t even contemplate how much butter and sugar lies within. 

Years ago, we bought these rolls and took them camping.  Ate one or two for breakfast with our small children as we brewed coffee over an open campfire. 

These days, we wouldn’t dream of eating a sweet roll.  OK, maybe we might dream of eating one.  But, instead, we’ll order our Veggie Burgers and Salad Bar. 

Much better than sweet rolls—I  promise!  (And you, too may become locally “famous” if you order Veggie Burgers.  I’m not sure too many people in the restaurant order them faithfully.)

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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35 Responses to “It’s the Veggie Burger Lady!”

  1. barb says:

    Oh – I think maybe we ate there – is it on the way to Eagle Harbor? I’m trying to remember what I ordered – I know it wasn’t a veggie burger but maybe the soup and salad combo (which is MY predictable choice). I probably looked at those rolls in awe – who could eat one of those giants?

    • Kathy says:

      I am SURE you stopped here, Barb. It’s famous. Did you drive up to Eagle Harbor from Marquette? Or were you only north of Houghton? I am glad you have a predictable choice, too. Don’t feel so alone. LOL!

  2. Sybil says:

    I love veggie burgers. Those buns look huge and incredibly fattening and unfortunately delicious ! 😉

    Almost worth a 2,000 km drive …

  3. jeff vanderhorst says:

    “big as a babies head” is how i’ve heard them described. The first time I ate there I had finished my meal and turned around in my seat to find I had been watched over by a world class lake trout trophy. quite a shocker, it was huge! food was good too.

    • Kathy says:

      Gosh, Jeff, I never thought of referring to those sweet rolls as babies heads! Yikes! What do you think of that lake trout trophy? Biggest one you’ve ever seen?

  4. nancy says:

    Kathy I thought that once you had your surgery you might start eating a little different , or do you save yourself for book club. 🙂

  5. john says:

    As Jon Bon Jovi would say, “Shot through the heart and you’re to blame, you give blogging a bad name, a bad name”. OMG I want a Sunday morning breakfast buffet tomorrow with the french toast made out of sliced rolls and breakfast pizza, aaarrrrgggghhhh! Instead I am on day 19 of 25 straight days at work (this was added to invoke sympathy).

    • Kathy says:

      Giving blogging a bad name? Moi? Come now, John–you know the Hilltop Restaurant will ship you a sweet roll. Heck, I’d even send you a sweet roll if you send your address. Or else you’ll just have to get up here for a visit next time you have a break from work!

  6. Dawn says:

    I remember the first time I walked into the Hilltop restaurant…I was newly living in Houghton and I was traveling with the HR guy of my bank to St Sault Marie for a meeting and he said we HAD to stop at the HIlltop for a sweetroll. I don’t really remember actually eating one though… It’s amazing that they’re still doing the same thing 32 years later.

    • Kathy says:

      It’s funny that you remember going in the Hilltop but not eating the sweet roll. Maybe the HR guy ordered one, and you opted for the Veggie Burger?? OK, I’m sure they didn’t have Veggie Burger’s 32 years ago. Pretty darn sure.

  7. kiwidutch says:

    Those (Cinnamon Buns?) look like they contain three times anyones daily recommended calorie intake! But phew they DO look delicious!
    So what if you are predictable? Take heart that many others will also be “known” for their menu choices.. but theirs are far less healthy than yours: they are predicable for all the wrong reasons.

    • Kathy says:

      You are right about that! Probably six times the daily calorie intake. Thank you for supporting my predictable nature. Phew. That feels better than a sweet roll. 🙂

  8. Elisa's Spot says:

    MMMMMMMMMMMMmmmm sticky buns!

    I had a guest once, that was always given to me as I was the newest employee, and the others must have thought stupid or too nice. Anyway, I remember TONS of things. This group of guests wanted things like a meatball, that I figured out they liked cut into 8 pieces and other such things. And after one night, I remembered them all. It’s interesting to watch people eat, you can learn sooooooooo many things about them if you are observant! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      I’ll bet you can learn a lot about watching people eat…that is an interesting thought. Note to self: be more observant when with eaters. Learn something.

  9. holessence says:

    Oh my gosh, I’ve NEVER seen rolls that size–they’re ginormous!

    • Kathy says:

      Ginormous indeed! (Is ginormous a word??)

      • Reggie says:

        It certainly IS a word, when you’re faced with a plate of THOSE size buns!!! 😀

        Had a good giggle at your new title “The veggie burger lady” indeed. I’m also predictable when it comes to ordering food in restaurants – a salad with dressing is my usual fare, or roast vegetables without sauce… I’m allerging to stuff, so I find it difficult to eat in restaurants.

        • Kathy says:

          I wonder if all of us are predictable in restaurants, Reggie? After all, we know what we like and don’t like or have allergies to…I am sorry to hear you have allergies. 😦 I had to eat super-healthy for five years because of my gall bladder, but am now slowly opening up to other possibilities.

  10. I admit, I usually order the same thing at a restaurant, too. Those sweet rolls look really good…. and there’s ALWAYS room for dessert! 😉

    • Kathy says:

      Oh good, Micheala, I am happy that you often order the same thing, too. (As for desserts–I had to quit eating them for five years because of the gall bladder thingee, except for an ocassional ice cream cone.)

  11. Robin says:

    At least once a year, I’d have the sweet roll (which looks pretty similar to a sticky bun or monkey bread or a cinnamon roll…but what’s in a name?). I’m all for veggie burgers (black bean burgers are my faves), but a treat like that deserves to be indulged in every now and again. I finally realized I’m here to live now, not live forever. I probably wouldn’t eat the whole thing, though… or even half. They look HUGE. And then I’d go macrobiotic for a week to balance out my system. lol!!

    I gotta admit… that veggie burger looks pretty good. Maybe I’d pass on the sweet roll after all.

    • Kathy says:

      Sweet rolls certainly have lots of different names, don’t they? A black bean veggie burger sounds awesome right now–although it’s after dinner. I like your plan about indulging and times, then balancing it out with macrobiotic. You sound like my kind of person! Mmmm…veggie burger. (Most people don’t get this. They think the sweet roll is the better mmmmmmm.)

  12. I was pondering your post about what to write when I kept going and stopped. Kathy, I don’t care what you write about if you would just send me one of those sweet rolls. 🙂 Ah, make it a dozen!

  13. Colleen says:

    I’ve missed your food stories! And photos!

    Veggie burgers are one of my favorite travel foods. We aren’t vegetarian but are somewhat particular about where our animal products come from, what they are fed and if they are humanely raised etc. Not always readily available info when travelling so veggie burgers are often the choice. Plus they’re (almost) always yummy!

    • Kathy says:

      Maybe it was YOU who summonsed a food story through the ethers, Colleen. I understand about your food traveling challenges. It’s always challenging to find good healthy food while on the road. (Although I could tell you a long story about when I discovered that veggies in restaurants–like grilled veggie sandwiches with cheese–often have three to four times the fat of a chicken sandwich. That was a huge eye-opener. Could almost write a blog about that crazy day in NYC.)

  14. Barbara Rodgers says:

    Adhering to my gluten-free diet would serve to protect me from indulging in those tempting and huge scrumptious-looking sticky buns! I’m predictable, too, at our favorite restaurant, Somewhere in Time Cafe: A “Keith Allan” (grilled turkey, mozzarella, fresh spinach, roasted red peppers & honey Dijon) with no bread. Tim orders different things so the waitress brings HIM a menu! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      It’s fun knowing what you would order in a restaurant, Barbara. Actually, I would like a “Keith Allan” right now. Please. Oh oh oh so good!

  15. Pingback: Don’t take me too seriously. « Lake Superior Spirit

  16. Marianne says:

    Mmmmm food! I love the framed picture on the wall of the dog in the cashier photo. Looks like a beautiful lab (?).

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