Route 99 Diner
8820 – 99 St.
Dinner for two with drinks: $35
Signature Dish: Bacon, cheese and mushroom Diner Burger ($9.39)
Signature Drink: Chocolate Milkshake ($4.69)
We didn’t stand out at Route 99. Among the bikers, church ladies, students and eco-folk that packed the ’50s-style diner, our suburban family of five merged seamlessly. I watched one calm server and one graceful line cook feed the crowd without losing their warm, friendly smiles.
For such an unpretentious spot, the menu was a lot longer than I expected, including full breakfasts, pizzas, salads and entrées. What really surprised me was that there wasn’t a price over $13 in the place.
My sandwich ($8.79) held a warm, moist mass of Montreal smoked meat between its toasted slabs of rye. I was equally pleased with the crisp fries, though the coleslaw was a little gooey for my taste. My milkshake ($4.69) – served in its stainless steel mixing can – was luxurious, velvety smooth and a chocoholic’s delight.
After such a feast, I was unable to consider the retro appeal of homemade pies turning in their glassed-in display cabinet. This is my only regret.
This inexpensive, unpretentious diner is not only exactly what it seems to be, it also serves up damn good food. Hold on to a piece of strawberry-rhubarb pie: I’ll be back.
See you there!