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The search for a grilled cheese sandwich on errands day landed the little one and me at Jimmy’s by the Park in downtown Chula Vista. A waitress with the name Tammy printed on the back of her black polo shirt seated us at a large booth.


Jimmy's Crew: Juan, Nina, Tammy, Carlos

The red-and-white checkered cloths on the tables in the middle of the room read “Mexican Eatery.” The humongous plastic menu containing millions of choices had “diner” written all over it (no, not literally). Add the leftover Christmas décor on the wall over the register and the gospel music playing on the faulty stereo system, and I was officially confused.


Initial assessment? Bizarre and incongruous.

Yet, after a few minutes, I began to feel somewhat comforted by the anything-goes-ness of the place.

Typically, diners provide an abundance of options for $10 lunches (including a drink). Though Jimmy’s prices are a tad higher than most old-school diners, it is still possible to eat a decent lunch for around $10. They have plenty of breakfast items in the $6.50 range, but most of their sandwiches cost around $8.50, and the salads are $10 alone, without the drink.

(For the little one, I ordered a grilled cheese, which she finished crusts and all, but that’s not included in this $10 lunch.)

I considered a French beef dip but opted instead for a BLT. When Tammy asked me what kind of bread I wanted, I hesitated at first. She suggested the wheat, saying “We have really good wheat bread,” and I took her advice. Usually, with a BLT, I go for white bread because what the hell, I’m having bacon anyway. If I ever order wheat it’s because I should, not because it tastes better. But Tammy was right, the wheat bread was delicious.


I might go back for that particular BLT one day, especially since the parking in downtown Chula Vista is 30 minutes per quarter.

BLT: $6.89 Coffee: $1.89

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