There I am, standing at Blacksmith's counter staring up at a blackboard menu, the tall-haired hipster behind the counter patiently—perhaps judgmentally—waiting for my decision. I think he can tell I’m indecisive. "Our BLT is really good," he encourages. "I usually put a fried egg on top."
1018 Westheimer Rd.
It’s decided, not so much because that’s what I want, but because I have a really weird rule when I go out to eat: Anytime a waiter tells me about their off-menu favorite with a fried egg on top, I have to order it. It's a guilty pleasure I can't say no to, a compulsion.
This happens a lot more than you would think too, especially with Neartown, Montrose, and downtown filling up with quasi gastropubs and coffee houses-cum-delis. BRC Gastropub’s pulled pork mac and cheese with a fried egg on top? Delicious—at least it was the first time when they cooked the egg properly. Two different waiters told me about their "personal" fried-egg-on-top favorite. And yes, I ordered it both times. I should probably take this time to apologize to my doctor.
But back to this BLT with a fried egg on top. Blacksmith’s idea of bacon is something a zealous butcher would call bacon: thick slices with a lot more of the belly than most—in the words of Martha Stewart, a very good thing. The “T” in the BLT stands for green tomatoes. Tart and pungent, they're perfect; in fact, the only thing that would make them better is if they were fried. But you can’t have everything, right? The bread is a dark, seedy affair, but it's inoffensive. It's not the star here, but, really, should it be? Same story with the greens.
And then there was the fried egg. It sends molten yolk pouring down over everything. Perfectly cooked, the white provides no resistance, no chew. It falls apart with each bite. Both white and yolk come together to add just enough moisture and saltiness to what I assume would be a bit-too-dry-and-boring-for-my-tastes BLT. My friend across from me, probing me for advice for her district—she’s a new foot runner for Wendy Davis's campaign—picked at a way-too-salty Vietnamese steak and eggs. Her dish was whole reason we went there in the first place. I looked at my empty basket. Oops. Too late to offer her half of my sandwich to make up for it.
Maybe the Vietnamese steak and eggs is proof that not everything is better with a fried egg on top after all. But will that stop me from ordering my food with a fried egg anyway, wherever and whenever possible? Never.