I had no secrets about how much I was going to miss Friendly’s on Route 57. where I’d gone often since I moved to central New York 38 years ago. I knew that they were going to put a Moe’s Southwest Grill in there, and I didn’t like it one bit.

Moe's on Route 57To be truthful, I’d never been to a Moe’s. I didn’t even know where there was one in CNY, though I know there’s at least one. However, it turns out there’s a Moe’s in the airport where I’m consulting, which I hadn’t known was there because I usually get in through one specific gate and one day I decided to change up for a little variety. Once you take the escalators to the end Moe’s is sitting right in front, sharing space with a Cinnabon.

I decided that I couldn’t condemn them overall without at least giving it a shot. So I ordered something called Earmuffs; yeah, I know, it’s a goofy name. In essence it gives you the opportunity to mix pretty much whatever you want to into one of their large styrofoam bowl/plates, and some stuff might cost extra but hey, if you can afford the main meal you can afford the extra 30 cents here and there.

I don’t like hot spicy stuff but I also mainly like hamburger, so I got that, mixed lots of things I usually like including their queso cheese (anyone who tells me that queso and nacho taste the same is out of their minds lol), and it ends up looking pretty good. When I ate it while out of town I enjoyed it, though I had to add just a little bit of salt.


Fast forward to the last time I was in town. This is a standalone building at the location where Friendly’s used to be so it looks different on the outside. I went with a friend of mine and when you first walk in, the people working there all yelled “Welcome to Moe’s”. I don’t know why but that made me laugh every time I heard it, probably because some of the people coming in jumped when they heard it.

My friend ordered some kind of burrito, which I forgot to take a picture of but I ordered the earmuffs because I was familiar with it. I didn’t want the chips that came with it but they gave them to me anyway so I took them. I ordered sweet tea, which I love but really shouldn’t be drinking, and we sat down in one of the booths.

IMG_20131231_113739I wrote a previous post about the difference between eating in the south vs eating up north, but I expected that since this is a national chain that the food would taste the same. Nope, I was wrong. Unfortunately, what I got was not only a bit spicier than I’ve ever had down south, it was extremely salty. Usually southern food is really spicy so that surprised me, but it was so salty that I couldn’t even eat half of it, and I went through two cups of iced tea. My wife asked me later why I didn’t just wrap it up, bring it home & cook more hamburger to offset the saltiness but I just wasn’t in the mood at that point.

Even saying that I’m going to be somewhat fair. Since I’ve had better tasting from Moe’s while out of town, I’m going to say that it was probably just because they were new that things were spiced the way they were. The freshness of the food was sound, so maybe it was just a bad mix on that day. The inside of the place was nice, clean and spacious, and one of the benefits if you’re having soda is that you can add multiple types of flavoring to whatever you’re drinking, since you serve yourself.

Because of that I’ll probably give it one more try. For my tastes it’s not like the Friendly’s that was there, which didn’t close at 9PM on Sunday nights (you other Friendly’s need to think about that) but it’s modern and fresh and I’m sure lots of people will enjoy going there.

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