Friday, October 10, 2008

Revisiting the Good Old Days at the Mug N' Muffin

Article and Photo by Eric H.

Back in the 1970s, the Mug 'N Muffin and Pewter Pot battled it out in Massachusetts for their revolutionary ideas of serving muffins and coffee in a colonial-type restaurant setting.

Post-and-beam ceilings, wallpaper with a 1700s look and other colonial flourishes and furnishings in long, narrow, dimly-lit dining rooms made us wonder if George Washington would come back from the dead to order a cup of coffee and a blueberry muffin. It never happened, although we did see former Boston Red Sox player and Hall of Famer Carlton Fisk order some muffins at the former Pewter Pot, Arlington, MA, location. All we know is that we are glad Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton didn't meet here to talk about their differences over a cup of coffee!

I frequented the Pewter Pot more because of its proximity to our home in Arlington, but also have a special place in my heart for the Mug N' Muffin. The food was actually better there, and I don't recall the restaurant making their waitresses dress up in humiliating Colonial apparel at a mere sixpence salary.

The Pewter Pot restaurants are gone from our region, while there is only one Mug N' Muffin left, located in Norwood, MA. Recently, I went back in time to the 1970s, as well as the Revolutionary Era, at the remaining Mug N' Muffin, which seemed a bit worn, but still possessing elements of the Colonial theme that I fondly remembered at this local chain.

One thing is certain, however: the food quality never slipped. Mug N' Muffin still does breakfast and lunch the right way. The scrambled eggs, grilled blueberry muffins in warm butter, club sandwiches, and clam chowder were every bit as good as in its popular past. Not a coffee drinker, the smell of coffee has always pleased me; the Mug N' Muffin still finds that special way to project the welcoming aroma throughout the restaurant.

With its faux post and beam ceilings, the out-of-date flowery wallpaper and dimly-lit candle light fixtures, the Mug 'N Muffin still has its Colonial theme intact. It's also a 1970s memory that, thankfully, is still preserved in its sole Norwood location. For old-time memory's sake, it's truly a special feeling reliving a part of my revered Massachusetts dining past.

Mug N' Muffin
716 Washington St
Norwood, MA
Tel. (781) 762-8927

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