Sunday, May 22, 2011

Is Murphy a German Name?

Before we went to the chocolate factory yesterday we kept up our strength by eating lunch at Haus Murphy, a German restaurant on Glendale Avenue, the main drag in downtown Glendale, AZ.

Murphy's is in a different building now than when I first moved to the Phoenix area.  The original location, farther down Glendale Avenue, incorporated the bar used in the Sally Field/James Garner film Murphy's Romance; hence the name of the restaurant.  In those days the menu was solidly German - wursts, sauerkraut, schnitzels, red cabbage, strudel, and awesome homemade soups.  It also had a beer garden with occasional live entertainment that you had to get to by squeezing through the kitchen.  Their food was the kind of stuff my mother's family cooked when she was small, only better, so she (and my sister and I) loved to eat there.  Dad is not as fond of German food as the rest of us but he was enthusiastic about their choice selection of imported beers.

The new location is larger and the beer garden is in a more convenient location - between Haus Murphy and the building next door - but I don't think the original bar made the trip.  The menu has also undergone a sea change; you can now order pasta and (at lunch) a variety of non-German sandwiches.  My sister Sue was horrified to find that they now serve pizza.  "What's German about pizza?" she kept asking.  (I didn't point out that the Reuben she ordered had been invented in New York City.)  The quality of the food, the German beers, and the homemade soups, however, is as high as ever, making it still the obligatory spot for a sausage and a lager before every trip to Cerreta's. 

“....there are more different sausages in Germany than there are breakfast foods in America, and if there is a bad one among them then I have never heard of it.“ ~H.L. Mencken

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