Bready goodness, too much to eat all at once.
I'll be honest: I don't really know who makes up the regular clientele at Teddywedgers. Even a half order of one of these savory hand-pies is almost too much to eat in one sitting. It's not a particularly convenient location for the modern blue-collar, hard-workin' types that traditionally made up the consumer base for Cornish pasties in the Old Country. But at the tip of State Street facing the Capitol, it is convenient to office workers, visitors and students, and the revamped business is as good a signpost for State Street as the old one was.
The business that was started by Miles Allen a quarter century ago and continued by Raymond Johnson in 2009 has now been taken on by siblings Karima Berkani and Anthony Rineer.
Gone is the goofy cartoon miner painted onto the front door. Gone are all the handwritten signs. In their place is a more austere look in keeping with the design elements of Forequarter and Heritage Tavern -- spartan, letterpress-style signage with a new old-timey feel, like reclaimed history.
Breakfast at Teddywedgers could be daring, with all that caloric and physical heft. The corned beef hash has some beefy flavor, but not enough, and a lot of cheese, perhaps too much. Bacon, egg and cheese is better, if for no other reason than the improbably delicately cooked eggs inside.
The biggest benefit to a Teddywedger is the nigh-unstoppable interior fire that keeps it hot like a sauna rock easily as long as it'll take you to get back to your car or office for lunch. It's great winter food. Beef, potato and onion is the classic recipe, and it's fine, if a little bland. I'd probably order the spicy version, which is given the business by quite a bit of spicy giardiniera.
The Big Cheesy is essentially an inverted sausage pizza, and it has quite a bit of cheese indeed. If you're in a calzone place, spiritually, this is your order. The pasty that made me the happiest by far, though, was the chicken pot pie. I want a fair bit of bready goodness on my chicken pot pie, so the generous amount of crust is welcome here. The interior is soupy but not too soupy, so even with the half-order (a whole pie, sliced in half), the filling's not going to run everywhere like a punctured soup dumpling.
I enjoyed interacting with the staff at Teddywedgers (the "Myles" prefix of the original name has gone by the wayside), two of which were the sibling owners. They chatted, they recommended, and they encouraged me to try some of the cranberry cake -- Mom's recipe, they said -- that was on special around Christmas. It was buttery, moist and tart, a welcome new presence in an old, familiar space.