the breakfast dictator [215]

Morning Glory | Philadelphia, PA

Posted in Diner Review by thebreakfastdictator on September 30, 2009
Morning Glory | 10th and Fitzwater

Morning Glory | 10th and Fitzwater

The number of times we drove past this dandy little joint in south Philly without ever even noticing it is certainly innumerable. Well, truth be told, I did notice it every time we made the trek from West Philly to South Philly for cheesesteaks at Pat’s – the dangling flowers on the outside always lead me to believe that it was a flower shop. The association was strange, I know, and fortunately, 9 years later, I stumbled over this glorious little diner at the corner of 10th and Fitz.

Every diner seems to have its own little quirks that make it charming (or an event to be forgotten) and Morning Glory is no exception. Most noticeable are the stainless-steel coffee cups (that I’ve heard were relics of a by-gone era that the diner scarfed up upon discovering them). And if, by any chance, that story is true, it adds just a bit more to this diner’s lure. Additionally, the ketchup is home-made and served in giant green glass bottles and a variety of condiments abound — my favorite, perhaps, was the Scorned Woman Hot Sauce.

easy on the eyes; pleasure on the palette

easy on the eyes; pleasure on the palette

I can be sold on anything, as long as it’s easy on my eyes and the very first time I sauntered into Morning Glory on an overcast, late-June day, I knew what I wanted before I was even seated. The grand, green Breakfast Burrito yelped at me from the plate it rested on at the bar as I walked by to my seat in the comfy blue (and rather inviting) dining room. Presentation is key and Morning Glory, perhaps, excels like no other (diner). It’s the little things that count and the small slices of fresh-cut melon (honey dew or cantaloupe) are laid neatly on the side of one’s plate. And let me take one second to gush about the fruit; having grown up in farm country (Lancaster, PA) I am somewhat of a produce snob and the honey dew I had that morning rivaled anything I’d ever find at Central Market in downtown Lancaster, and that, my friends, is an awfully difficult task to accomplish.

Typically, I prefer to avoid long lines, so i enter early (7 on weekdays or 8 on the weekends) and in my last visit, the cooks were singing and carousing with the servers and with the regulars (reading their Inquirers or City Papers at the bar). One of the regulars rolled up in a tan Chevy pickup, straight out of the sixties and, for a moment, I lost myself inside this little diner-world, soaking in the timeless ambiance of excellent food and damn-near perfect atmosphere.

Morning Glory ain’t no flower shop, as I so wrongly assumed my sophomore year of college, and that’s a glorious thing. You’d be best to visit (and make yourself a regular relatively soon).

Breakfast Portraits {1} | J.F.T.

Posted in Breakfast Portraits by thebreakfastdictator on September 29, 2009
JFT | Honeys Sit n Eat

JFT | Honey's Sit 'n Eat

Everytime we go to Honey’s it’s overcast. It feels like Pittsbugh in ’07. Those dreary mornings welcomed us with light rain and grey clouds as we woke to trains running through the old steel yards along Hatfield Street. That city is still strong, but not steel strong. Strong in a different way. The WSJ even says so.

We were only roommates for a few months, but now, two years and 4 cities later, we catch up at Honey’s for breakfast every other week. It was there that the first of the breakfast portraits was made on that overcast September morning. We weren’t welcomed with the sound of the trains rustling along the tracks, but everything else felt so familiar.

Some things never change.

The Runcible Spoon | Bloomington, Indiana

Posted in Diner Review, Travel by thebreakfastdictator on September 16, 2009

This Bloomington breakfast joint was recently listed as one of Esquire Mag’s 59 Best Breakfasts in America. And while I spent countless weekends in Bloomington between 2004 and 2007, it somehow escaped my knowledge; a grand faux paux, indeed. Regardless, there is talk of making the trek to the un-official Hoosier capital in October just to swing by this grand little place that was literally a block or two where I spent so many fall weekends for three straight years. (One should know that there is a ton to do in Bloomington, especially if you’re from out of town, so don’t fault myself [or anyone else for that matter] for missing a hot spot such as this.

Hopefully, we’ll bring you a review (complete with photos) rather soon.

:: The Dictator ::

Breakfast King gets National Press

Posted in Uncategorized by thebreakfastdictator on September 4, 2009

From Jason Sheehan of

Breakfast King Still Rules Denver’s Breakfast Scene

The Breakfast King | Denver, CO

Posted in Diner Review, Travel by thebreakfastdictator on September 1, 2009
Beth Carlton : Breakfast King Waitress

Beth Carlton : Breakfast King Waitress

He stands at the corner of Santa Fe and Mississippi. One hand mightily grasps his scepter, the other rests confidently on his hip. His crown rests cocked, while he strongly looks over his empire, confident that he stands above the rest. And he does.

I first visited the Breakfast King in the autumn of 2005. It has remained the Standard for breakfast joints to live up to, and thus far, the King still remains in control of his subjects. The threat of revolt is low, for few can combine the atmosphere, wait-staff friendliness, and more than merely edible food into one top-notch diner experience.

Very little has changed at the King since my first jaunt across the country and this is a good thing. Smoking’s been subtracted and Wi-fi added; nothing more. It still feels like walking into a Tarantino film, though Jewels and Vincent are notoriously absent. The lush orange booths are large and welcoming while the matching table-tops beg for elbows connected to arms connected to hands holding mugs that’re ready for re-fill after re-fill of coffee which the more than wonderful waitresses (complete with outlandish eye makeup) will drop into your cup long before it approaches empty. The register remains a relic from days gone by further adding to the King’s delightful charm.

Beth Carlton was our waitress on this mild August morning. We watched her whir around the diner floor, from table to table, smiling and sitting with her customers to take their orders. What a doll.

I ordered the Denver Omelette (what else!?), adding jack cheddar and tomatoes to it at a scant sixty-cent upgrade. Your choice of bread (I took Rye) and potatoes (I suggest the Chulupa Hot Sauce to top them with) are included with all Omelettes. The Omelettes are massive and cooked with care. Despite my all too strong bias for this place, there are fewer places I’d rather purchase one.

Our group was large and we were in and out in under an hour, but for those of you who like to linger, there’s a long silver bar for just that. Susie, Beth or any of the other sweethearts on staff’ll keep ya company there while you read the Post or catch the morning news.

Ratings (they’re awfully high, but trust me, you won’t see them this high again):

  • Atmosphere – 9.5
  • Service – 9.9 (no one’s perfect)
  • Food – 8.5
  • Coffee (out of 5) – 2.5
  • Affordability – 8


  • Denver Omelette: $6.35
  • + cheese and tomato: +$.60
  • Coffee: $1.75
  • Tax: $.70
  • Tip: $2.00
  • Total: $11.40

More Photos can be found here.