Once again the weather was absolute perfection and the setting for the café is ideal. I could have easily slumped into one of the Adirondack chairs for a midday nap but it was a leisurely lunch by the river before hitting the road again.
It seems that we stumbled upon a little gem, as well. The story behind the Morning Glory Café began when a family of Laotian refugees escaped the war-torn country in the late 1970's; stowed away on a convoy bound for Vientiane then crossing the international border at night to Thailand on the Mekong River using inner tubes. Almost three years were spent in a Thai refugee camp before they made it to America in 1980. Four local churches sponsored the family of eight, helping them settle into Old Lyme.
The second youngest of the six boys of the family, Sichanh Patana was five when the family arrived in 1980. This café is his pride and joy and with the help of his brother Pon and the occasional help by their mother, they've got a nice little business going.
The menu is a mixed bag of American favourites like chicken wings, a Reuben sandwich and burgers, but there's a good selection of Laotian/SE Asian specialties as well. Spring rolls, satay, even phở. Crunching into the luang prabang egg rolls was an absolute delight. Little golden cigars of pork, carrot and glass noodles - one of mum's recipes. I followed it with a non-Laotian bowl of New England clam chowder; creamy, rich and delicious.
My partner in crime settled on an old favourite - the roast beef sandwich with Swiss cheese, jus dip and fries.