I have received several recommendations about restaurants to check out but today’s pick is the only spot where multiple people have told me that this is a “must try”. Southwest Diner, appropriately located on Southwest Ave. in South City, is tucked between several houses with only a cactus out front to give it away as something special. We chose to attempt brunch on a Saturday around 11a.m. but apparently our idea was not so unique. The restaurant was full when we got there and remained packed for the entire two hours that we were there. My biggest complaint of the day is that there is no waiting area so if you are seated at one of the unfortunate tables by the door, be prepared to have waiting patrons towering over your table. On the plus side, the wait moved relatively quickly and there was plenty of unique Southwest décor on the walls to capture our interest while we waited.
We were seated and quickly greeted by our waitress who provided us with great service throughout our entire meal. As we looked over our menus, I sipped on Kaldi’s coffee while my husband had a beer-mosa consisting of OJ and Schlafly Hefeweizen. While I prefer a Bloody Mary as my breakfast drink of choice, this was definitely an acceptable alternative. We also ordered an appetizer of sopapillas which are very light, puffy, doughnut-like pastries that came accompanied by a bottle of honey. This created a sticky mess of deliciousness that would have probably been more appropriate for the end of the meal but let’s be honest, I would eat these 24 hours a day if I had the chance.
Our food arrived quickly and a giant enchilada-style, New Mexican breakfast burrito with calabacitas (an assorted mix of corn, squash, zucchini, and onion) was placed in front of me. In addition, the burrito was filled with eggs, home fries, cheese, and green chilies and topped with salsa and melted cheese. While I lost the battle with this giant, spicy, yummy burrito, the leftovers made a perfect late-night snack. My husband went for the Grande Egg Combo: complete with two eggs, breakfast sausage, home fries, and a short stack of buttermilk cornmeal pancakes served with an optional side of cream cheese butter. We both agreed that his dish could have used a bit of sauce or spicing up of some sort but luckily each table had about 5 different sauce options and the Cholula hot sauce really helped. The cornmeal pancakes tasted just like cornbread but were a bit more dense and soaked the cream cheese butter and syrup right up. Even though my stomach felt like it was going to burst, I could not stop stealing bites of the pancakes from my husband.
Southwest Diner provides the perfect twist to your average breakfast and diner fare and it comes at a reasonable price. Thank you to everyone who suggested this spot. Please share this review and keep the ideas coming!