PROFILE: Midtown Lunch’er “Blair”

Every Tuesday I turn over the site to a Midtown Lunch’er for their recommendations of places to eat lunch in Midtown. Today, it’s Blair a Marketing Coordinator.  I introduced her to Cafe Zaiya, and she has introduced me to the wonderful world of Rochester, NY garbage plates…

Name: Blair


Marketing Coordinator

Where in Midtown do you Work?:
41st & Lex.

Favorite Kind of Food:
Street meat, cheese, and crab legs

Least Favorite Kind of Food:
Anything served at an Old Country Buffet. Nothing like seeing various, unidentifiable foods scooped out of opaque plastic bags and dumped into a buffet trough

Favorite Place to Eat Lunch in Midtown:
Food Trends (41 btw. Mad+Park), probably the greatest by-the-½-pound buffet. At 3.99 for ½ lb, chose carefully, otherwise you can easily spend well over $10 for lunch. I usually grab the wasabi crusted salmon bites or Israeli cous-cous from the cold section. And in the hot section, mango lime mahi-mahi and the coconut shrimp are choice

The “go-to” lunch place you and your co-workers eat at too often: Old Bridge Deli (41st & Lex.), it has something for everyone and for the innumerable delis in the area, this one is decent with good buffet.

Place you discovered thanks to MidtownLunch: Café Zaiya. They need a frequent onigiri card like Oms/b; I eat at least 4-5 a week. Also, Kati Roll, Oms/b, & Todai..

Dream job location, purely for lunch purposes?: If a job market existed there, I would pick my hometown of Rochester NY. I’m obsessed with garbage plates: a mélange of cheeseburger + hotdog + macaroni salad + home fries then drizzled with ketchup, mustard, and hot sauce. U-n-r-e-a-l.


GARBAGE PLATES???  Your ideas intrigue me and I’d like to subscribe to your newsletter…  if you’ve never seen one of these things (I hadn’t), Blair sent me a link to this photo, which you can see after the jump: 

Photo from Nick Tahou Hots, Rochester NY. Courtesy of via Tigerhawk

Wow.  Now that is unbelievable.  I worked in Massachusetts for a long time, so I am very familiar with American Chop Suey (Garbage on a plate in its own right)… but this takes it to another level. 

Does this thing exist outside of Rochester?  And by that I mean, are there garbage plates in Midtown???  Anybody???  (Although maybe it is best left in Rochester.  Just looking at the picture is making my heart seize up… and not in a good way.)  Oh my lord. U-N-R-E-A-L is right.

As always, if you have any Midtown Lunch news or you’d like to be next weeks Profiled Midtown Lunch’er, just email me at


  • Garbage plates, FTL. Get me some arroz con gandules and we’ll talk, B.

  • Just to correct a couple things previously said. First, there is some truthiness about the Tahou’s name change to Steve T’s Hots and Potatoes. This did happen but only at the satellite store on Lylle Ave. not the original restaurant on Main St. I don’t know what went on internally obviously, but this place is owned and run by Nick Tahou’s brother Steve and his wife. Everything about it is still exactly the same as it was before from food, employees, menu, grit, and everything else. The only thing that did change was the front sign and that’s it.

    I also wanted to respectively correct the comment about “Rochester Hots” being near Hilton Head, SC. This is untrue. Rochester Hots does exist but it is actually down in Pompano Beach, FL. The owner is actually one of the parents of a former friend of mine from my high school in Rochester and I believe they opened sometime in 2000 but I’m not positive on that timing. I know that my high school had a South Florida Alumni gathering there in 2001 though. From what my friend told me, at that time of opening, the restaurant was such a hit down there that they had lines out the door every day during their first few weeks of operation and the place was paid off after a month of business. Not too shabby. I’m also hoping someone from the ROC opens up a place down in the metro area myself so I can go back into my past…but only if they’re from Rochester. Who knows, maybe I’ll do it once I find some spare change lying around.

    And for those of you who say it’s only possible to eat a plate late night when you’re drunk, then you’re just a buncha woosies :p Ever tried saving some plate for the morning?… brilliant hangover cure!

  • Ahhh the garbage plate. $5.75 of wholesome goodness. My god, if one of these were offered in the city, I’d be in heaven……..

    Cheesburger Plates Extra everything (and a bottle of ketchup and hot sauce to go) Woo!

  • Blair I think your hot if you would like to meet for lunch one day just let me know I’m 6’2 medium build – black professional :)

  • Blair I think your hot if you would like to meet for lunch one day just let me know I’m 6’2 medium build – black professional :)

  • How about the Facebook group that boasts 868 fans of Garbage Plates?!?

  • Believe me it tastes better than it looks and eating it is a Rochester college student tradition.
    I just heard about Trout. I was hoping it would make it to NYC at some point but the idea of fries instead of home fries just doesn’t sound right and their picture is all neat without any pan grease on top (aka Tahoe’s special sauce)
    And of course you won’t get your pop in a sourvenir cup like Tahoes’

  • I love plates so much I got a job at a hots restaurant. If your not from rochester, there are several “hots” restaurants dotting our area that specialize in plates. Some of these places even deliver! My job is great, I can have a plate everyday. (I don’t) If you want to expirence rochester, visit a hots place at about 3:00am.

    And thank you COYS. I get customers EVERY week from Florida that for whatever reason feel compelled to tell me that they are from Florida, and that they miss garbage plates. I have been able to tell of rochester hots but Intill stumbling on that post, I didnt know where it was.

    And as a sidenote, my restraunt was asked to ship a plate via UPS to somebody in california. My boss thought it was impossible intill i showed him we could do it. THe hot meat sause was put into a plastic jar with a cap and kept cold with dry ice. So was the mac salad and pre-cooked potatoes. The meat (burgers) was sent raw to be pan fried. Sounds like a lot of hassle, but not really. All the jars are recycling, we buy a styrofoam container and some dryice. Then the package is then 2-day air-ed (ups). all in all we shipped 6 cheeseburg plates for $200. He has since ordered to more times. If anywho is intrested I can email you a menu…. I would love to help out anywho else that misses garbage plates.

  • *anyone.

    I hate typos

  • i went to UofR for a few years…and garbage plates were the cornerstone to any nutritious post drinking marathon.

    re: pantera’s comment about showering after a plate. stooops. who showered in college?

    and re: beancounter’s comment about sending pledges…those were the glory years.

    anyway, i’m here to tell you that there is apparently a joint in nyc that’s got plates. the establishment is called daddy-o in the west village. the plates cost 12 bones. i’ve yet to try it…but i’m aiming for it in the near future.

    judging from pictures i’ve seen, they look all gourmet and shit…which is def not the roch-cha-cha way…but then again, i’m not 18 years old with a belly full of 4 mayo jars of beer.

  • EP, please let me know how I would go about getting a plate shipped via UPS. I have been out in Seattle for two years now and am absolutely geeking for a plate. Thanks.

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