Highland Park Diner

Highland Park diner is one of those places that apparently everyone loves, and for good reason.  It’s in a slightly sketchy neighborhood in Rochester, NY and that’s actually one of it’s charms.  The parking lot is tiny, as is the building itself.

Highland Park Diner in Rochester, NY
Highland Park Diner in Rochester, NY

There’s so many people coming here that they have tables outside with umbrellas.  Except for the outdoor seating, it reminds me of the best of the old time New York City diners I’ve eaten in.

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American Diner

Categories: All American, Casual, Diner, Eat-in
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Published on: May 16, 2014

The American Diner is across the railroad tracks on Old Liverpool Rd in Liverpool.  It's definitely on the right side of the tracks, and that's the whole point.

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The food is not the point here.  It's fuel for the body, prepared sufficiently and presented plainly.  The prices are completely average – not high enough to gouge your wallet, but high enough to give the staff a decent wage.  The staff – efficient & friendly.  Happy to talk with you if you want, willing to leave you to your own devices.  Parking is sufficient, enough for everyone if the place is packed.  No, there's only one important aspect of The American Diner, and that is the ambiance.

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Coop’s Kitchen

Categories: All American, Casual, Diner, Eat-in
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Published on: May 14, 2014

"Nothing good is ever cheap, and nothing cheap is ever good."  This is the slogan – or warning – emblazoned on the front of the menu at Coop's Kitchen.  There are a number of other breakfast joints that may be cheaper, but it's not like they're charging double what other places do.  Is it worth the extra money?  I'm not sure – I've had a couple different experiences here.

coops_kitchen_001Coop's Kitchen has taken the spot last occupied by PardZee's on Bridge Street in E Syracuse.  PardZee's was a golf-themed breakfast and lunch spot, and some of the golf-themed decorations still haunt the spot.  PardZee's had been there for a number of years, and had built up a steady following.  After they closed, I'm sure many of the regulars moved on to other nearby spots.

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Just Donuts

3 Rivers Plaza in Phoenix is an anomaly.  They have a first class Thai restaurant here at the south end of the plaza, one that's surprisingly good.  They also have a decent Chinese takeout joint.  But if you get up early – like crack-of-dawn early – and visit the north end of the plaza, you'll find a sugar-soaked gem.  It's open Tue – Sat 6 AM – 1 PM, and Sunday 8 AM – 1 PM, closed Mondays.  Tucked into a tiny, tiny spot near a dental office (how appropriate!), you'll find Just Donuts.  And find it you must.

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I've said before, my favorite dessert is another lobster tail.  But that doesn't mean I don't like sweet stuff.  I've never really gone out of my way for confections, but I just might if this place stays open.  If you like truly hand-made sugary delights, you'll have to make your way up to Just Donuts.  Even though these are hand prepared, you can still buy them by the dozen.  And why they don't charge more is a mystery to me.

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Mimi’s Drive In

Categories: Diner, Eat-in
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Published on: September 9, 2008

Having met with a client further north, I was on my way back to my office when I decided that noon was the perfect time for breakfast. I pulled off 481 into the surprisingly empty parking lot of Mimi’s Drive In – a diner just north of the last traffic light (or just before the first one, if you’re headed south) in Fulton.

Going in, I realized my car clock was running about 10 minutes fast. While most of the tables and booths were empty, the waitresses were gearing up for the lunch rush. At Mimi’s you seat yourself, so I hoggishly scooted into an empty booth which – if your party’s made of starving artists – seats 4 people comfortably. My justification was that I’d be out before the real rush got there.

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