66 Chat & Chew

CHAT n CHEW. directly across from the sprawling big Sears complex at the corner of Sam Rankin & Leopard, Chat & Chew was on Leopard. The Chew featured all sorts of great food items from burgers, sandwiches, cakes and pies. Classic diner but more of a restaurant, including big breakfast menu. I understand the place was bought for $75 in 1930s. Was not born yet so will tell you about 1960s. It was sandwiched between a Goodyear Tire Store on left, and on right, was a little liquor store. Later that liquor store would end up being a taco house. At the Chat & Chew however seats were limited, originally had about 20 seats, then 'expanded' with some booths, and a little bit longer counter so at height in mid 1960s could fit maybe 100 people. Inside door was a cigarette machine, the kind you plunk coins into like trying to win something, only to pull knob and pack of smokes drops into tray. Next to it was a small gumball machine, one had round gumballs, the other sort of breath mint things squares, both penny. I was about 10 first time into this place, had passed it for years on bike, even going behind it to dig in dumpster, just not inside. Very inviting place, and large portions of food like Noe's Café down the road near my house. When I first ate there got a breakfast plate of eggs, bacon, toast, wow was a lot of food! My dad took me there and 'sprang for the meal' as we were fixing to go across street to sears to look at Christmas stuff. Never bought anything, Santa brought us stuff. The glasses of ice cold milk from this place haunt me to this day, must have been 40-44 degrees was icy cold, that cow was shivering. Since I had gotten my feet wet by going inside, I would also go back not to eat but sell Worlds Finest Chocolates for Cathedral.

Photos: #1 & #2, inside Chat & Chew. Cozy, comfortable no nonsense place. It is my understanding it closed in 1989, but building it still there, and tons of great food served in my time. Yum, 10 cent toast with dozens of small jelly packets and butters on them. Photo #3 is a rear photo, and the last configuration of Chat N Chew inside in 1970s.

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