Sunday, September 14, 2014

Lori’s Diner

"It's great to be great, but it's greater to be human." ~ Will Rogers

Place: Lori's Diner
Location: 900 North Point Street (in historic/touristic Ghirardelli Square)
Hours:  open at 8:00am every day of the week (however, both downtown locations are open 24 hours ~ or probably 23:35 hours ~ every day)
Meal: Veggie Omelet ~ Mushrooms, onions, bell peppers, & tomatoes, seasoned with herbs (served with hash brown [noted as two words] potatoes, toast, butter and jam); and a cuppa organic Coffee

(Today's EweToobular juxtaselection is from a relatively newish Electropop group out of North Carolina and the title of the song fits a breakfastary theme. Someone recently showed me this song/group on defacedbook and I liked it/them well enough. Sorry, I don't remember who actually showed it to me, but if you are reading this 'blog-entry: "Thanks!")

Sometimes you just need a nice helping of Americana for breakfast. With that in mind, I headed over to Lori's Diner. They are a local mini-chain of 50's-style diners; they also have two downtown spots (the original one on Mason Street and another one on the corner of Sutter and Powell Streets) and two more at San Francisco International Airport. There used to be three downtown locations, but the third restaurant, which used to be on Powell Street (at O'Farrell Street), closed about two years back; and all were within two blocks of one another ~ kinda overkill if you ask me (even if you don't ask me, it's still a bit overly homicidal). I have eaten lunch or dinner at a few of their locations before, but this was my first breakfast venture there.

Lori's Diner at Ghirardelli Square is supposed to open at 8:00am every morning (or at least that is what is stated on both their official web-site and even on signs in the door); however, when I got there around 8:20am, the doors were closed and the "SORRY… Closed" sign was still in the window. Unlike yesterday, unfortunately, I did not have an official back-up "Plan 9 From Outer Space" (nor even a back-up "Glen or Glenda"), so I was about to go for a little walk around Aquatic Park and Fisherman's Wharf, but one of the workers must have seen me lurking around outside and flipped the "OPEN" neon sign switch on and finally opened around 8:25am. (Now does the silly 23:35 hours joke make any sense in the "Hours:" section above?) It's a good thing, too, as Fisherman's Wharf may cater to large tourista hordes, but it is grossly lacking in the amount of good places to go for breakfast (or "Brunch"). I ended up being the only idiot sitting there for about another fifteen minutes until another tourista family decided to intrude upon "my restaurant" solitude.

As it was a great morning, I had to sit outside in their open-air patio deck, where there are nine tables for four ~ with umbrellas on four of the tables. The main inside dining area probably has seating for twice that and there is another smaller indoor dining room that has at least as many tables, too. There is the front half of a '56-'57(?; sorry, my automobile I.D. is about as acute as my knowledge of how best to prepare a Rib-eye steak) Chevy on the patio deck, too. As far as I could see, it really serves no purpose other than taking up a valuable parking space (well, half a space) that could easily house one of those great little parklets that I have heard so much about lately.

the Wild Parrots of San Francisco Interlude

Seeing as there is a major pandemonium (or, possibly, several pandemonia) of Wild Parrots that roosts in the tall Eucalyptus trees at the end of Fisherman's Wharf (where it abuts Fort Mason), I was pretty sure that I would run into at least a few of the noisy feathered freaks. As it turned out, I saw three of them right away playing on a lamppost on my way over to Ghirardelli Square from where I had parked.

There really were only a few other items on the breakfast menu that seemed interesting to me: Taco Ole Omelet (Vegetarian chili, avocado, salsa, sour cream & Jack cheese) or maybe Fresh Spinach Omelet (Chopped spinach, sautéed onions, a hint of garlic, fine herbs & cream cheese); otherwise, there were simply pancakes or French toast.

I liked that all the "veggies" (Seriously, is this still the 1980's?! How hard is it to actually call them "vegetables"? Do the extra three letters used to spell it correctly cost that much more in printing the menu?) were grilled first before stuffing them into the omelette. This would not be for those that suffer from Fungiphobia, as there was a good amount of mushrooms in this. My choice of toast was sourdough. 

The organic Coffee was just your typical diner fare stuff ~ hot, black, and basically tasteless. I even found it necessary to break one of my Cardinal rules and added two packets of sugar to it (okay, maybe it is more of a Blue Jay rule, but still). I ended up adding the rinds from the orange slice/garnish into it which really made it half-way passable, and, because of which, I even felt it palatably necessary to get another half-cuppa refilla (sure, it wasn't really that good, but it is still Coffee, after all).

I only noticed that they had Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (the standard red) inside in the condimentary supplements area, but they probably also have Tapatío® (I had lunch here a few months back and I seem to remember they had it then). I just used some of my own Fat Cat® Surprisingly Mild Guajillo Ghost (Thanks, Cindy & Greg! The really nice thing about this one is that it sounds like it will be demonically spicy, but it really is pretty mild and can be used copiously.) generously all over the omelette and some Born to Hula presents Devon Allman's All Natural Hot Sauce Chipotle Blues (Thanks, Kerry!) on the potatoes ('cause, as I have stated many times before, chipotle and potatoes are a great match).

Even though the food may have only been "just okay", the view from my Patty O'Furniture table-seat (and the subsequent awesome late-Summer sunny weather) was a million $$$ one this morning.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: "Veggie" Omelet ~ 6.0; Million $$$ views of San Francisco Bay ~ 8.5; the Wild Parrots of San Francisco ~ 8.5

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