I am a night owl; most nights, I go to bed around three AM, and stay there until shortly after noon. To complicate matters further, my day job is actually usually an evening job. Waiting tables at a local pub that closes at midnight most nights, one on the weekends. This is later in the evening than most other restaurants, so if I’m working a closing shift, and I don’t want to make food at one thirty AM, my options around here are limited to twenty-four hour fast food. How I miss the Kountry Kart Deli.
KKD’s, as it’s affectionately called by the folks who frequent the deli-style restaurant, proudly boasts that its doors are open twenty hours a day. They’re only closed from three AM to seven AM. Sitting pretty on Burlington, VT’s Main Street, half a block west of Church Street sandwiched between the Flynn Theatre and a Kabab shop, KKD’s sports fare ranging from burgers and dogs to breakfast sandwiches and cold cut lunch meat. The Mahoney, my subject for this week, is a sandwich designed with dinner in mind.
A Mahoney is a hoagie roll stuffed with chicken tenders, mozzarella sticks, bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, and chipotle mayo, and it’s my favorite item on their menu. It can be a struggle for me to eat enough that I actually feel full and satisfied. I understand, cognitively, that I’ve eaten enough and that I won’t be hungry for another several hours, but that’s different from not wanting any more to eat. I’ve had cheesesteaks, gyros, burgers, and breakfast sandwiches (rise n’ shiners), and nothing has satisfied my hunger like a large Mahoney.
There are no tables at KKD’s. The big windows that face the street have counters on the inside where you could stand and eat your food, but I never have. I always take it to the park across Main, City Hall Park, and sit at one of the benches or walk the ten minutes to the lakefront and find a bench there. Down one wall of the small restaurant are racks of snacks, including chips, cookies, brownies, and the like. Down the other are cold beverages. Because of the way that Vermont’s alcohol laws are set up and the way that KKD’s is licensed, these coolers contain cold single bottles of beers as well. At the counter you can purchase cigarettes, candies, and other convenience store-type foodstuffs. There are no tables at KKD’s, but they have everything else you might need.
I no longer live in Burlington. I moved back to my hometown after graduation, and without KKD’s, my food options late at night are sorely limited. It’s a sad thing, and whenever I visit the great white North, I make sure to pop by the Kountry Kart Deli for what just might be my favorite sandwich in Burlington.