Charlie says “really rings my bell”

Monday proved to be a little bit on the cool side for riding the motorbikes. With a clear blue sky, it would be very wrong of us to not bundle up and hit the road.

For layers I had on a long sleeve shirt, my blue fleece zip jacket, my summer mesh jacket with liner, long pants and summer riding pants (no liner). I probably could have used the liner in my pants, but I didn’t happen to put it in. I had on my winter gloves, and the heated grips were set to warm. I think it’s safe to put my summer gloves away. To keep my neck warm I had on a fleece gator.

PBJ had the liner from his winter coat on under his summer leather jacket. He also had on his tourmaster pants, but I’m not sure how warm they were keeping him.

I ran a few errands solo (post office, bank), and then met up with PBJ after my bi-weekly pre-chemo blood draw. It was decided a trip to Brockton was in order. Why? Because we could!

On the ride up route 25/495, PBJ needed a numb fingers break. He should have heated grips installed before his VT trip next week, but in the mean time, he’s suffering in the cold. We stopped at the Dunkins near Rock Village and each enjoyed a small chocolate (PBJ had white) drink.

In Brockton we saw the side of the WB Mason building decked out to commemorate the 2004 Red Sox World Series. I’m not sure if they will modify the picture to reflect this years success, but the image is very entertaining either way.

After zooming around downtown, we took a pit stop for gas before heading south to the cycle shop. You can tell they are serious about bikes because they have designated motorcycle parking spaces.

We wandered around the showroom and parts shop for a while. I’m considering getting a seat cover for the scooter, putting a piece of metal under it, and using that as a platform for a magnetic bag. It’s just a creative thought in my head.

When we walked out the door an older woman stopped us to inquire about the scooter. I told her it was an automatic, showed her all the storage space, and assured her that the engine was more then capable of keeping up with traditional bikes. She liked it because it had a big seat. After talking with us she said she was going to look more closely at scooters versus a large bike.

Before leaving the parking lot we had to decide where to eat. It was getting on 3pm and PBJ had only fueled up on nestle crunch and brownie bites. (I’m serious!) With our return trip heading through Wareham, we decided on Charlie’s Place. It’s didn’t require turning left across multiple lanes of traffic, always a plus.

We tootled down 28 most of the way between Brockton and Wareham. It took well over an hour for the trip, but it was more scenic then the highway.

Arriving at Charlie’s, the place appeared closed, but PBJ rode around and found that we were on the wrong side of the building. I take the blame for that.

Inside Charlie’s we took the two seats at the far end of the bar. We were basically continuing our bar rat tradition. The bartender asked us what we would like to drink and offered menus as soon as we were settled (we had on those heavy riding jackets).

Neither of us had been to Charlie’s, but the sign out front told us they had pizza, seafood, and something else I can’t remember. The menu had most of the usual suspects for us bar rats. I was tempted to make-my-own meal with a few of the appetizers. There were wing dings and buffalo wings (wing dings have the hot sauce on the side). While we tried to tease a decision out of our taste buds, we both ordered a cup of clam chowder.

The chowder was thick, but not packed with stuff. I’m not sure what the deal was, but there were no chunks of potato in my clam chowder. The broth (is it considered broth in a chowder?) was the biggest player, followed by clams. There really wasn’t much to it, so I was glad that the crackers lasted in my cup as long as they did.

Tim, the bartender, had the Red Sox return to Boston on the tv. He was upset that he had to work the next day and could not go to the city for the rolling rally. He did have a good rapport with the regular patron at the bar, and kept the mood light and the drinks filled.

While I did seriously consider the fish and chips, I settled on a pizza with pepperoni and black olives. PBJ choose the sirloin burger with cheese and bacon cooked medium-well. While waiting for our meals, PBJ had an order of mozzarella sticks.

The “fried cheese” was very crispy on the outside and served with a dipping sauce that was more chunky then sauce. Think salsa. PBJ seemed to like them, but I prefer marinara sauce with my fried cheese sticks.

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Sirloin Burger at Charlie’s

The pizza came out on a metal pan. I don’t think it was cooked in the pan. The center of the pizza had a softer thin crust and I used my knife and fork to eat the first couple of bites of each piece. As with many pizza places, the cheese isn’t the highest quality contributing to the extra grease from my choice of toppings. For a bar rat, the pizza was pretty good.

PBJ ate all his burger, but didn’t finish his fries after eating all that pre-meal food.

If I had a star rating system (which I don’t), I would give it 3 1/2 out of 4 stars.

  • The service was attentive and friendly
  • the atmosphere was warm and homey
  • food wasn’t bad, but the clam chowder needs improvement
  • value was good

I’m not one to give bad reviews. I hate making snap calls based on one visit. While the price of the meal wasn’t bad at all ($40 including tip for the both of us), I was kind of disappointed in the clam chowder. I feel like I’m getting petty, but I stand by my thought that there should be potatoes.

As for the greasy pizza, it’s getting to be that way most anywhere you go. This is due to the higher costs for dairy products in general. Most pizza offerings are now less mozzarella, more cheese blends that don’t always stand up to the cooking process. Since this is a market trend, I can’t count it against Charlie.

After being out most of the day, it was time to ride home. Arriving just at sundown, PBJ tucked his bike into the shop while the scooter was wrapped up for the night.

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