Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Polish Hotel Breakfast
Based on a survey of upwards of two (okay, three, actually, if you must know) different breakfasts, a sort of “industry standard” seemed to emerge. Wet eggs in an unwarmed warming pan, some uncomfortable looking hot dogs, good bread, totally decent cheese and salami, pickles, tomatoes and cucumbers, maybe a radish, served with choice of Nescafe or Lipton, and assorted crappy juices. Then there are usually a few “variable items.” At the Hotel Katowice (God forgive the sinners who designed, built, currently staff, and hesitate to destroy it) this meant cat food floating in what S. says I generously called “aspic,” and eggs slathered in mayonnaise. The eggs were pretty good, I thought, but the cat food aspic thing was absolutely revolting. The gelatinous texture failed to distract the mouth from the taste of offal within. At the Royal Hotel in Krakow there was a boiled vegetables and mayonnaise salad , a fairly common Polish dish (I go nuts for this stuff, have ever since I was a child; the pattern that seems to be emerging here is that I love mayonnaise). Thinking back to last year, this standard seemed to apply in Romania as well, where the “variable item” at the Hotel Agape in Cluj-Napoca was a Greek salad with the worst of all possible “feta” cheeses. In fact, it was only in the context of the salad that I would have thought to guess it was feta they were shooting for. Taken alone, I would have guessed “salty white cardboard.” Corn flakes and/or muesli are always provided as an “out” for the cowardly or nutritionally inclined.