8 Geeky Food Joints We Wish Were RealJanuary 2, 2019
- Lars RoxasWords
Earlier this year, I wrote a list of 10 geeky eats that we all wish were real. It was a moderate success. People seemed to like my selections, but of course, everyone thought I missed a few crucial entries. That really couldn’t be helped since there are so many yummy works of imagination spread out over all of fiction.
You all also had your own suggestions for me to include in a follow-up entry. A couple of you even said they’d be fine with nothing but dishes from Cooking Master Boy. While it would’ve been easy to just list down all the stuff you guys mentioned in the comments and called it a day, I like you guys too much to do that to you. Instead of just rehashing that old article, I figure I’ll just do something similar but new.
Great restaurants aren’t just about the food. The location, décor, and clientele are all significant factors as well. With that in mind, here are 8 geeky places to eat we’d all love to visit provided there’s a spaceship (or dragon) we could hitch a ride on to get there.
8. Ten Forward
Ten Forward is the quasi-canteen/employee lounge of the USS Enterprise-D on Star Trek: The Next Generation. It’s located on Deck 10, Section 1 of the Forward Hold of the ship, hence the (extremely unimaginative) name. Admittedly, the interiors leave much to be desired, but the bartender is Whoopie Goldberg and that counts for something, I guess.
What Ten Forward lacks in visual aesthetics, it more than makes up for with the infinite number of choices you can order. Say hello to the Replicator.
In the Star Trek universe, replicators are devices that are able to recreate any type of food you program into it by rearranging the molecules of the matter and energy it uses for fuel. Want giant mangoes the size of watermelons? Go ahead. Ever wondered what grilled Stegosaurus would’ve tasted like? Well now, you can find out.
Personally, even with all the doomsday devices, invincible warships, and sexy cyborg women Star Trek has shown us over the years, I still think that the Replicator is the most impressive, and yet underutilized, tech in the Federation. Why has no one ever thought to weaponize these miracle machines? Phasers would be obsolete in a universe where you can just turn the enemy’s ships into giant balls of cheese (or waffles, Captain’s choice).
7. Mos Eisley Cantina
The Mos Eisley Cantina is probably the second most iconic location in the entire Star Wars saga, just under the Death Star but above Endor, Cloud City, and Hoth. Okay, wait, maybe not Hoth. Let’s try that again.
The Mos Eisley Cantina is the third most iconic location in the entire Star Wars saga. Known properly as Chalmun’s Spaceport Cantina, the place has served as a refuge for scoundrels, smugglers, pirates, and other assorted nasty types since before the fall of the Old Republic.
I’ll be honest, the food here is probably shitty, and the drinks are so bad you’re better off drinking the coolant from your ship’s hyperdrive. Still, the Most Eisley Cantina will always be worth visiting because the coolest man in the galaxy, along with his walking carpet bestfriend, hangs out there.
This is a place where literally anything can happen. One minute you’re drinking a Tatooine Sunburn in peace, the next you’re swept up in events beyond your control. Before you know it, you’re fighting for the Rebellion, rescuing headstrong princesses, and doing the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs.
6. Inn at the Crossroads
The Inn at the Crossroads is just your normal run-of-the-mill Westerosi tavern. It would be completely unremarkable and forgettable if it wasn’t for the fact that shit gets real in that place almost every other Tuesday.
For anyone who isn’t caught up on the Game of Thrones books, you might want to skip this entry. Anyway, here’s a partial and incomplete list of all the wildly significant things that have happened at this inn:this was where Catelyn captured Tyrion (directly leading to the war), later Tywin would hang the inn’s proprietor (even though she had nothing to do with Tyrion’s abduction) just to be a dick, Arya offs Tickler (one of the people on her hate list) through repeated murder-stabbing here, the Hound dies (or does he?) under a nearby tree after being heavily wounded in a fight inside the inn, the same inn that later turns into a brothel, fails at being a brothel (a truly special kind of failure), then becomes an orphanage. Finally, Gendry decides to stay at the inn in order to become the resident blacksmith of the place.
Frankly, this being GoT, I’m fairly certain I would die in under an hour if I ever set foot inside the inn. It’d be worth it, though, as long as I get the chance to hug and high-five Arya before I go.
5. Hellfire Club
The Hellfire Club is both the name of the kinkiest supervillain team in the X-Men rogue’s gallery, and the Gentleman’s Club they use as both their headquarters and source of income. Whether it’s in the comics, movies, or cartoons, the Hellfire Club’s roster is always filled with men who dress up like Anne Rice vampires and women who are perpetually walking around in S&M bondage outfits.
The Hellfire Club makes its money by giving their (rich) customers the best night of their lives. Repeatedly. And charging through the nose for it.
If a customer drinks anything there, it’ll be the best drink they’ve ever tasted. Want a steak? You’ll get the best steak of your entire life. Think that girl by the bar is cute? You’ll end up bringing her, and her friend, home. Or so you are led to believe.
Through the telepathic powers of their female members, they can brainwash you into thinking you’re having the time of your life. The White Queen (played by January Jones in the photo above) can give you a dining experience you will never ever forget, and she won’t even have to touch a single pot or pan.
4. McAnally’s Pub
In Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files series, magic is real, wizards are in the phonebook under w, and every monster, fairy, god, demon, and spirit is out to eat humanity’s (collective) face. In the midst of all this chaos, a humble little pub in Chicago serves as a neutral meeting place whenever the forces of good and the forces of evil want to take a break from whacking each other in order to talk about the future over bangers and mash.
McAnally’s Pub, run by the eponymous and tightlipped Mac, serves the best beer in the whole of Chicago. He brews it himself, keeps it under the bar, and only serves it to his favorite customers. If he catches you putting ice in his creation though, be warned, you are automatically banned for life. The fact that you can drink your beer while (safely) watching the heavy hitters of the magical world throw their weight against each other, just makes Mac’s special Ale all the more sweeter.
3. The Leaky Cauldron (movie-verse)
Speaking of magic and wizards, we here at Pepper are big fans of the Harry Potter series. In both the books and the movies, the Leaky Cauldron stands as the portal between the wizarding world within Diagon Alley and the mundane reality outside it. While both versions of the place serve pretty much the same purpose, I’m singling out the movie-verse Leaky Cauldron for a very specific reason.
Look at this guy. I want to visit the Leaky Cauldron just for a chance to talk to this dude, forget about all the special wizard food.
Do you realize what he’s doing? He’s reading Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time while performing magic without a wand. Even Dumbledore and Voldemort can’t do that. Clearly, his interest in muggle physics has allowed him to use magic in ways that were previously thought impossible. Who knows what else he’s capable of doing. It makes you wonder if the whole series has been following the story of the wrong wizard this whole time.
When the King of Hell decides to abdicate his throne, as seen in the Vertigo’ brilliant series Lucifer, and travel to earth, the very first thing he does is open a high-end jazz bar called Lux. He cuts off his wings, puts his demon girlfriend Mazikeen in-charge as manager, and settles down to what he wishes would be an uneventful eternity of not having any f*cks to give.
Lux is clearly an outfit that drips class and sophistication, you can see the refinement from every crystal chandelier and silk napkin in the place. I have no doubt, with an immortal pseudo-deity as its owner, that the food will be superb and at least equal to any Michelin star restaurant in the world.
More importantly, though, am I the only who thinks a night of conversation with the Morningstar will be an experience never to be forgotten? He’d be the ultimate drinking buddy, provided of course that you have alcohol fancy enough for him to drink on hand. I mean, just look at that smug bastard’s face, he’s practically leaking charm and handsome from his every pore. (Wait, do angels even have pores?)
1. Yubaba’s Bathhouse
In Hayao Miyazaki’s masterpiece Spirited Away, a young girl named Chihiro is forced to work in a magical bathhouse, owned by the witch Yubaba, that caters to spirits in order to save her parents (who’ve both been transformed into pigs). I know it sounds crazy written like that, but you just have to roll with it. Trust me, this is one of the best, if not the best, animated films ever made. If you haven’t seen this movie yet, stop reading right now, find a copy, and watch it. It’s okay, I’ll wait.
Done? You sure? Okay, now we can continue.
In the scene where No One starts giving away gold nuggets in exchange for an endless supply of food, before he starts trying to eat everyone and everything, it’s pretty easy to see that the bathhouse has a very skillful and experienced kitchen staff. I’m pretty sure the dishes taste really good as well, since it’s probably made by the same people (spirits?) who cook the so-irresistable-I-don’t-care-if-I-turn-into-a-pig feasts that got Chihiro’s parents in trouble in the first place.
The best part about the bathhouse is the after dinner treats. Once you’re full and halfway to a food coma, you can just relax in one of the baths and wallow happily in the hot water.
What are you’re favorite fictional places to eat that I missed? Do you think I’ll get hate mail for including Lucy? Sound off in the comments section below.