Don Bauder 7:49 p.m., May 22
I was feeling hunger pangs in the afternoon and I wanted something fulfilling and satisfying. I did not want to go far since I was walking. I chose Joes diner. Joes is a local place that has been around for a number of years. I have eaten here in the past and the food has always been top-notch. The chef always uses local produce and if often seen choosing the daily vegetables at the local farmers market. This place has a great feel to it. The décor is homey and quirky and there is always something new to look at. The outside dining is clean and has plenty of tables to choose from.
I wasn’t feeling very adventurous so I tried the special of the day. ($6.99) The special is one of my favorite meals. Home Fried Chicken, white rice, steamed veggies and some fresh corn tortillas on the side with your choice of homemade salsas. Now this is not just your run of the mill fried chicken. George the chef has been perfecting this recipe for most of the 9 years he has been in business. The chicken is perfectly seasoned with a secret blend of herbs and spices that he will not even tell his wife. The white rice is perfect and is great by itself. A little hint, try the salsa on the rice!
My dining companion was feeling a little more adventurous and he wanted to try the homemade pot pie. ($7.99) These pies are not like the store bought versions. They are as big as dinner plates and would be easy to share. George makes his fresh, rolling out his own bottom and top crusts, hand picking the vegetables and using only prime cuts of meat. The hard part about the pot pies is deciding which one to order. The chef features Beef, Chicken, and Veggie pies. The pies are served with your choice of home fries or rice and come with fresh, local steamed veggies.
Joes diner has a full menu, including the No-Choice special. ($4.99) This means you get whatever they serve! This plate is always the best value. It’s always a surprise that doesn’t disappoint. I have had everything from meat loaf to soup. I would recommend this anytime.
So, if you are ever driving down Escondido Blvd. and that familiar feeling of emptiness sets in in. Don’t forget there are local eateries that can fill that void.