The Reben Luncheonette, a decades-old breakfast-and-lunch counter in Williamsburg where fried eggs are accompanied by sagging mounds of orange potatoes and shriveled slats of deep-fried bacon, doesn’t have a lot going for it in the way of food. That’s probably why the storefront, along with every employee’s ball cap, reads “Morir Soñando.”
Composed of orange juice, milk and sugar, the Dominican-born, Latin-American-spread drink translates to “die dreaming.” After tasting it just once elsewhere in Brooklyn, I’ve accepted the Reben’s definition ($3) as canon. Fresh, sweet oranges are juiced upon order, mixed with evaporated milk and shocked with ice in a steel malt cup. The frosty elixir that pours out is bracing and sweet. Bits of pulp line the bottom of the glass, and the blend of milk and sugar issues just enough creaminess to prod the ice cream center of the brain.