The Gladwyne
341-C Conshohocken State Road
Gladwyne, PA 19035
(610) 896-7796

It's been at least ten years since this homey restaurant was last reviewed. It deserves more attention now than ever.

The Village of Gladwyne has the Old Guard House Inn and the tiny Gladwyne Lunch Box. "Annie's" however, has the best cuisine of all.

This dining establishment is perfectly located in the tree-studded ne plus ultra mansions of the Main Line, not one hundred yards from the center of Gladwyne Village. With Philadelphia to one's back, and Conshohocken straight ahead, stroll along Conshohocken State Road from the Post Office until, on your right, a driveway appears on an eight acre lot dotted with dogwoods, spruces and evergreens. Impatiens in varying colors of coral pink glimmer from under bushes and meander along pathways to an outdoor courtyard. Thereafter, follow the pointed branches of a tiny holly tree which direct you toward the inn's front door, the one with the golden elephant head and Maltese Cross upon it.

Annie is always there to greet you. "Hello, Skinny, my darling. You look exhausted. My favorite edacious lawyer must take off his clothes and make himself comfortable." Here is the only place I know where the owner has an assortment of clean worn dungarees and cozy XXL shirts available to change into before one's repast. I pick a pair of Lee's 40's and a blue chambray pullover as eating garb. Moccasins are likewise offered and accepted.

Thin wood planks, recently butcher-waxed, lead to the dining area in the Great Room. To the immediate left is a piano with chestnut lacquer-coated top, above which rest opened display cabinets and bookcases filled with leather golden-bound books of famous trial transcripts. The ceiling has been ensconced with recessed lighting as if it were a planetarium, throwing illumination softly everywhere.

Annie appears from the kitchen to take one's order. She's quite beautiful. Her hands usually caress one's neck from behind as she explains the menu. Her forearms press against the very tops of my shoulders. Her fingers on her left hand, one of which is topped by a ten karat tourmaline, begin to twirl the hairs at the nape of my neck. She tickles my ears with her diamond-laden right hand; and bites my cheek.

"You're having cubed tofu in defatted chicken broth! Then some steamed spinach with three sea scallops. Dessert is non-fat yogurt with half-a-cup of fresh raspberries. You can pick them from the bush out back after you've finished your broth. A little exercise wouldn't hurt."

"I hate tofu," I moan, and ululate uncomfortably.

"What kind of restaurant do you think this is? Give me strength,” she calmly whispers. “I serve one meal each night, and this night it's tofu." She's adamant.

"Annie's" is a restaurant where you don't compromise; you acquiesce completely. The owner-chef is an entrepreneur whose demanding demeanor and coy ploys create successful submission from all whose appetites need appeasing. I therefore have never tasted more delicately and delightfully prepared tofu, spinach and scallops. I’m gourmet-gorganized, and pick raspberries with relish.

When my last report appeared over a decade ago, I was much heavier, and decidedly more dolloping of demeanor. Annie, on the other hand, remains as she was then: slender, sensible and wise; a person of simple passions, as caring a human being as I know. With her kindness to me, we may both live beyond 100. On her last birthday, June 5, 2005, she'll be as close as needs to be discussed, to halfway there, and on July 4th, 2005, Annie and I shall have been married forty years.

Annie's restaurant has never been in better shape, serving and being served by those for whose heartiness she's graciously and lovingly taken responsibility.


Copyright 2005 Richard Max Bockol, Esq. Back