Located at the corner of Geary and Mason, the Pinecrest Diner happened to be a restaurant Sarah and I saw just about every time we left our hotel. With a sign outside advertising the best breakfast in town (how believable is that?) and hours that kept it open around the clock, Sarah and I knew we’d be here sooner or later.
Normally we found a queue forming out the door, into the cool San Francisco morning, but on this day it wasn’t so. Maybe it was the early hour, or maybe it was just a lucky break, but we arrived with just one couple in front and were seated within minutes. The tight space and old school feel, made for an atmosphere that seemed equally apart of the experience. The smell of every dish filled our noses as we sat down and enjoyed the scent of pancake batter and greasy bacon. Almost like a breakfast intoxication, I dare say.
We were seated at the second last table from the entrance, allowing us to drink our coffee and enjoy the entire show; from the open kitchen to the wide array of patrons. An older gentleman dressed to the nines, who looked to be in his 80’s, served us coffee and chatted with customers like he was one of the brat pack. I wondered if the stories we overheard were true, or just part of the San Francisco act we encountered in a few places. As we refreshed our minds with a flood of caffeine, we looked through the classic breakfast menu.
Sarah decided on the Hot Link and Eggs (over easy) while I went with the Corned Beef Hash and Two Eggs (sunny side up). In similar fashion to almost everywhere else we ate, Sarah ordered sourdough toast, while I changed things up and went with rye. With a packed house, and no rush with our endless stream of coffee, we barely noticed the wait and soon found ourselves staring down big plates of food. Accompanying both meals was a pile of crispy fried hash browns. Our eggs were cooked perfectly, which is always nice. My hash had that great mix of flat top grilled edges and soft interior, but wasn’t as chunky as I’d imagined it to be. Sarah’s sausage had a nice little kick, which I think helped cut through the heavy grease and fat that was oozing out. The only thing I would have changed was the hash, which felt more like mush and was so full of cubed potato that with my side of hash browns made for a heavy, brick like meal. Good, warm, greasy..just really heavy.
Who’s to say who has the best breakfast in a town so loaded with restaurants, but the meal here was good. And without any real diner mentality back here in Edmonton, the Pinecrest made for a fantastic change of pace. A quick look through the lunch and supper menu had us both smiling and we agreed that we’d come back one day, just to sample a few other items.