Just a quick note, sorry no photos.
I had lunch at Jo’s Diner in Mission Hills a few days ago. I’ve walked past it about a million times but always had a different destination in mind. So imagine my surprise when it was featured on Diner’s, Drive-ins & Dives a few weeks ago. Nearly fell off the sofa. This dinky little place on West Washington (at Falcon) was getting national attention…and it looked pretty damn good.
That meant instead of just continuing to walk on by, I would eventually have to stop in and give it a go myself. It’s not a large space, maybe 50 seats including both counters, but it is comfortable.
Both my firend and I started with the French onion soup. Probably the best version I’ve found in San Diego. The bread was on the bottom of the soup, not the top, which made it easier to eat. No fighting to get your spoon through a molten layer of cheese and bread to find the soup. And speaking of cheese, the cheese on top had great crunchy bits while still being oozy. The onions had been cut small enough to fit on a spoon and they were plentiful and the stock a nice balance of beef and red wine. It’s everything you want a French onion soup to be. Hearty and satisfying but with enough refinement and elegance to make you forget you’re basically eating an onion and stale bread
My friend had eggs benedict with spinach and artichoke. It came with a choice of breakfast potatoes, tater tots, salad or fruit; she chose salad. The benedict was beautiful with perfectly poached eggs, hollandaise with a kick and a melange of artichoke and spinach. Kind of like spinach & artichoke dip meets eggs benedict. It was good, she’d order it again. The salad was the usual blend of spring mix with a dressing that was a bit on the sweet side. My friend would have preferred the dressing to be a little more acidic to cut through the richness of the hollandaise and eggs, but this was a minor quibble. She thoguht the dish was a winner.
I had the grilled ham and 2 cheese sandwich, which I really liked as well. The ham is roasted in-house which is essentially why I ordered the sandwich, and the cheese, cheddar and gruyere, was plentiful, silky and gooey. It came on thickly cut, country style bread. The contrast between the heft of the bread and the much softer ham and cheese made the sandwich more interesting than just your basic ham and cheese. I chose a guilty pleasure for my side, tater tots. Yep, I can eat these things like candy.
3 cups of tea, 2 cups of French onion soup, 1 ham & cheese sandwich and 1 eggs benedict all came to $46 without tip. Lunch isn’t cheap anymore but I thought this was a pretty fair price for the quality of the food.
I’m in the area at least twice a week, I can honestly say, I’m not going to walk on by Jo’s Diner any more. It really is worth stopping in for a bite to eat.