I am an Idaho native. Born and raised. I’ve been able to do some limited traveling, but I’ve only really lived one other place. In my early 20’s, I lived in Buffalo for about two years. Even after that, I never did understand the Buffalo wing craze (and I still don’t), but there were a few other food items that I became fond of. In 2007, about five years after I returned to Idaho, Stan’s Char-Broiled Hot Dogs opened up in the Vista Village shopping center in Boise. Suddenly I was able to get most of the things I missed about Buffalo, right here at home.
The onion rings are another item that resulted from much refining and which get a lot of attention from the local food press. And they are good, no question about it. The only thing that could make them better would be if that crunchy, flavorful coating adhered to the onion slices just a little better. Trust me, a good portion of it will be crumbs littering the bottom of the bag by the time you’re finished stuffing them in your face. Personally, I prefer the fries.
|Haddock Fish Fry|
In Upstate New York, go to a place that does fish fry and you can expect to get one large, intact piece of haddock, lightly flavored and with a crispy but not at all heavy breading. There’s pretty much always a small side of slaw, a cup of tartar sauce and a slice of lemon involved. If you’re a person who digs fried fish, you owe it to yourself to check this out.
|Check out that flaking action…|
This is the part where I intended to talk about another of my favorite menu items, the Beef on Kummelweck sandwich. Sadly this item has been discontinued due to an inability to get the quality of beef Stan demands for a price that would keep the cost of the sandwich reasonable. Sad, especially because nobody else around here serves it. Bardenay does have a variation on it, but my advice is to keep an eye open when you’re traveling, because this is a dish that spreads out a little further every year. So, moving on, we’re going to talk about something that you almost never see brought up on this site: dessert.
|Chocolate & vanilla swirl frozen custard|
Yet another thing that I loved about Buffalo was frozen custard, which is basically ice cream with the addition of egg yolks, which makes the whole thing smoother and richer. It’s decadently delicoius. Until recently, Stan’s was the only place to get this stuff, and since I don’t patronize the other place that sells it I guess I’m just SOL as of 9/1. I know there has been talk of finding another location, and on occasion Stan’s wife can be found out and about slinging from a hot dog cart. At the moment though, the most likely option for the future of Stan’s is a food truck, and I’m guessing if that does well enough there probably won’t be a new brick & mortar joint to come. And that means no more frozen custard. Between now and that date, I intend to indulge a few more times, and recommend that you do as well.
It would be easy to dismiss Stan’s as another dog and burger eatery (that reminds me, I still need to try the Polish Bacon Burger), but you’d be making a mistake. The place is clean, the food is good, the staff has their crap together and the owner is an insanely nice guy. Stop in and see them while you can still eat their food indoors, it’s worth it. As for what the future holds, following their Facebook page is probably your best bet.
Food: This would be good stuff even if it wasn’t of a variety that nobody else around here does. But it is. A
Value: A little pricey for certain items, but the plane ride isn’t free. A-
Service: There’s nothing better than a group of people who care about their food and know how to make it well. A+
Atmosphere: Typical diner. The food and the crew are what makes it stand out. B+
Final Grade: A