Truckies Drive In Cafe, 90-92 Boundary Rd, Laverton North. Phone: 9325 1553
There are hundreds of fast-food outfits spread across the industrial wild west, servicing myriad operations big and small, lubricating the wheels of commerce and feeding a mix of blue-collar workers of many kinds and their support colleagues.
I’ve always assumed that they’re pretty much interchangeable and that the food involved is not much good and even less good for one’s health.
So why try this one?
Well, I’ve driven past it many times, so it has become an itch to be scratched.
It’s got the sort of name and something of the appearance of a genuine ‘Merican-style truck stop.
Still, my hopes are appropriately modest.
A good burger would be good.
A very good burger with fresh, hot, crunchy chips would be a bonus.
My more extreme fantasies run to a wise-cracking waitress named Loretta or Rhonda, a jukebox stuffed with prime Merle Haggard and a slice of house-made apple pie a la mode.
And fantasies they are, as I discover when I enter what looks like a routine fast-food place.
But the welcome from proprietor Elias and his crew is warm and welcoming.
They’ve been here for almost the all the eight years an eatery has operated here.
Even better, my dismay at the line-up of already-made and wilting burgers and kebabs is immediately dispelled upon being told that, yes indeed, a burger can be made fresh to my specifications.
My burger is better than good.
The flattened patty is rather lightweight but tastes OK.
The other components – lettuce, tomato, bacon, some raw onion, sauce – are fine.
But the ace in the hole is the top-quality bun – fresh, big and delicious.
The chips are hot, well-done and inhalable.
Even better, there’s HP Sauce on hand in which to dunk them.
Burger and a can of soft drink $6.90, chips $2.
And at that sort of price, requesting an extra patty is quite viable should you want a more meaty feed.
And now some wise words from two of my fellow western suburbs food fans: