I lived a little dream. One stage in my investigation of the NY hot. This may seem odd to those that do not know me but I like this sort of stuff. I find it very interesting to have a very basic food item which in Canada would not be the focus of a restaurant and would really be considered a kids food here but in the states is more like getting a pizza slice. It's a hold over perhaps.
The street Tobin's sits on is a poorer street in a poorer part of town. Down the way there are a few very small bars each probably sustained by a side street or two. I mentioned this street to portland once and he, too, had noted it as being an American classic of a sort: run-down sure but also a neighbourhood which had likely seen far better days yet which still acted like a neighbourhood, if a hard one. In Tobin's itself there were five or six people plus two pleasant staff sharing five or six counter stools and maybe three table. There was still wainscotting walls, narrow tongue and groove lathe ceiling with one small grill at the back with the burgers (each a "Whimpy") and hots. It likely looked like that in 1949 and 1974.