Just down the hill from the fast-food-riddled Byron exit, there’s a charming little spot called Downtown Byron. There’s a church, a railroad depot and a little restaurant called the Drugstore Cafe.
Instead of bromides or a soda fountain drink, you can get salads, sandwiches, soup, quiche or sweets. The price is fair and the homemade goodies are a whole lot better than the same old fast food.
We tried the cheeseburger pie quiche for $7.95 and the BBLT for $6.95. The quiche reminded me of my favorite dish as a child — ground beef topped with fresh tomatoes and tons of cheddar cheese. The twist here is that it’s surrounded by an egg custard and in a much more delicate crust. The BBLT (I should have asked what the extra B is for) was like a really good sandwich you would make at home —tons of hickory-smoked bacon, crisp lettuce and a juicy tomato. All sandwiches are served with chips and candied (yes, candied) dill pickles.
What I found interesting here is that they have a thoughtfully chosen bread for each kind of sandwich. The Baltimore Bad Boy, with sliced beef and horseradish, comes on rye swirl; the turkey and pastrami with Russian dressing comes on dark wheat and the muffuletta is on a French roll. There are several sandwiches on sourdough — perhaps the most perfect bread ever made — so someone here really knows their sandwiches. Of course, you can request any of them on plain old white bread, but why do that to yourself?
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Little ones will appreciate the PB&J for $2.25 and the grilled hot dog for $2.95. They make their own plain and spicy pimento cheese as well as egg salad and tuna salad. The fruited Jello is a fun side for $1.95 along with coleslaw, pasta salad or a small mixed green salad. They make tasty-sounding paninis, too.
They had brownies and pudding for dessert the day we came but it changes daily. The Drugstore Cafe is a fun place to slow down a bit and enjoy what’s left of the long summer days.
The Drugstore Deli
Address: 100 West Heritage Blvd., Byron
Hours: 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday
Payment: credit card, cash
Kids menu: no
Noise level: low
Health rating: 100
Price range: $2.25-$8.75
Rating: 2.5 stars