Something about a restaurant with a monkey as the face of the restaurant just didn’t sit well with me. But it sure did catch my attention. I had heard about Alf’s for quite some time, but was hesitant on going there because I knew I’d have a problem with the confined monkey being what lured customers in.
But the monkey and the owner of Alf’s, Terrie Rickerd, have some history. The monkey named Elvis is 14 years old and has been a part of the owner’s family since the beginning.
With that being said, try to take in the restaurant at best, without the predetermination of Elvis’s living situation.
The service was a bit slow when it came to taking orders.
I noticed that a few customers were waiting for quite some time before anyone acknowledged them or took their orders.
The employees working the cash register and up front had attitudes as if they were encaged all day alongside Elvis. Contrary to that, the food was served pretty quickly.
“I ordered a Swiss mushroom burger, a chocolate malt shake and fries, it was incredible. I would definitely go back because it was so good,” freshman Natalia Wan said. “I like the fact that it’s right around the corner from school so it’s not too far of a trek if you’re hungry for some comfort food.”
There is seating right against Elvis’s glass sanctum, which seemed to be the most popular for obvious reasons.
Every time a child, and even a few adults, walked into the restaurant their attention went straight to the sanctum where Elvis played.
One little girl in particular, had probably been anticipating her visit to Alf’s, because as soon as she came through the doors she ran straight to the cage and eagerly watched Elvis’ every move until her mother called to her to come eat her food.
She quickly asked her mother, “Where does Alf (referring to Elvis) go at night?” A question that I’m sure many customers have wondered.
Elvis has a family, and though his captivity during the day is hard to take in, let’s all hope he is happiest at home.
Despite the unenthused and slightly unfriendly employees that took customers’ orders, the food was great and tasted the way any retro burger joint should taste.
Alf’s Ice Cream & Burgers is located off of Highway 99, at 1250 SW Baker St McMinnville, OR 97128.
Columnist Special Lovincey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.