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Marilyn Hagerty: Uff Da Tacos among drive-in fare in Northwood

NORTHWOOD, N.D.—When in Northwood, N.D., I figure you should eat like a Norwegian. This town was settled by immigrants from Norway. So I ordered the daily special of Uff Da Tacos.

This was on Tuesday, May 9. On Wednesday of the same week, the special was lasagna. On Thursday it was soup and sandwich. On Friday, it was a breakfast plus burger—a bacon cheeseburger with hash browns over an egg.

My Uff Da Taco special came with four small beef tacos adorned with sour cream and salsa. There was crisp lettuce and the sharp taste of raw onion. Friends Sue Huus, Susie Shaft and Donna Gillig were with me. We sat around one of three large round tables inside Cool Stuff Drive Inn.

We found the drive-in offerings interesting and good. The inside of this place is more like a restaurant. It is fresh and clean with seating for 64 and an overflow room. It is inviting with its soft blue walls and yellow daisies in Coca-Cola bottles on some of the tables. On the walls there are pleasing arrangements of pictures that show the history of Northwood and its people.

Mia Hermanson, daughter of the owners, was our server. She said, "Every morning like clockwork, the men start coming in at 6:45 a.m. for coffee. They sit at this first round table for eight.

"It's an unwritten rule," she said. "Men sit at this table, and the next table is for the women. They pay $1.60 for coffee and stay as long as they wish."

Usually they go through eight pots of coffee in a morning.

With a park across the street, Cool Stuff draws all ages of customers. And it offers a wide variety of foods. On Sundays, there is roast beef or meatballs or maybe chicken.

The Hannestad family has operated Cool Stuff drive in for 19 years. Before that, they ran Hot Stuff on the main street in Northwood.

Now they are advertising they want to sell their business and retire.

Meanwhile, the cars keep coming up to the six parking places in front of Cool Stuff. If the spaces are full, they look for room along sides of the building.

Report card: Homemade food is a plus. Inside seating is attractive, clean and interesting with historical Northwood photography. Restroom rates an A for cleanliness.

Cool Stuff Drive Inn

505 Main Street-Old Highway 15

Northwood, N.D.

Telephone: (701) 587-5731

Owners: Eugene & Mary Hannestad

Specialty: Uff da tacos

Hours: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. summer closing

Reach Marilyn Hagerty at mhagerty@gra.midco.net or by telephone at (701) 772-1055.

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