Top Hat vs White Castle in our Detroit neighborhood households was an arbitrary preference, it seems; like being Catholic vs Lutheran. We were a Top Hat household. We used to visit the one on 8 Mile Rd and Ryan, often on the way home from Northland on Saturday evening (1950's). Working there was a classic hamburger stand employee named Betty who worked the counter. She had horn rimmed glasses, a southern accent, and seemed to work there forever. Even though I only weighed 45 pounds I could guzzle 7 or 8 "Hats" at one time, sometimes by the time we got home. Hats and Castles are (or were) NOT equivalent. Hats tasted different - and boy what I'd give to have a sack of those today. I still remember the way they tasted, and even though I still visit White Castle, it just doesn't quite make it 100% (unless I'm totally zonked on beer).
And...by the way, Telway in Madison Hgts has (at the current time) the very best french fries you've ever tasted - try 'em sometime - and do yerself a favor, get two orders.
Oh, and trivia time: Anyone out there who can remember the ORIGINAL
8 cities/metro areas served by White Castle (as was printed on the side of the burger box)? I memorized it years ago - just from staring at that box while having a "white castle orgy," in a dizz, after a night on the town. I think they were: Detroit, Columbus, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Chicago, Louisville, New York-New Jersey, Minneapolis.
<message edited by OldDetroiter on Thu, 05/13/10 12:54 AM>