On Diner No. 1 and Brunch: Round 2.

Remember when we were all worried I wouldn’t find a good locally-owned brunch joint in Richmond?  How I panicked that my days of hot, maple-syrup-drenched pancakes, eggs, and bacon were nothing but a sad, distant memory?  That the experience of hanging out in a booth and drinking Maker’s Mark-infused milkshakes before noon was one that future generations of Richmondites may never have a chance to experience?  Remember that??

Ok, perhaps that last scenario hadn’t actually crossed your minds, and maybe this isn’t as much of a crisis as I’m making it out to be, but today I get to reassure you IT IS ALL STILL POSSIBLE.  After my last breakfast experience, I received a number of recommendations for places to try.  One of them was Steveston’s Diner No. 1, a new eatery in the heart of the village.  Their well-designed website convinced me that yes, Diner No. 1 should be the spot for Brunch: Round 2.  How many of us were eating?  3.  And how many things did we order to eat?  4.  This numerical whimsy only just occurred to me, and I had to point it out.

On this breakfast mission I was joined by my friends Chris and Anna, who were visiting from Ontario for a beach volleyball tournament.  They’re tall, tanned, and a thousand times more athletic than I’ll ever be, but I was a DARN good cheerleader/provider of snacks.

They’d spent the weekend working up serious appetites, and – lucky for me – were ready for some serious food.

We ordered 3 hearty breakfasts: The Lumberjack ($8.99), The Steveston Platter ($11.99), and the Florentine Eggs Benny ($8.49), plus a carrot cake with almond cream cheese icing for dessert ($4).  Then we had a post-dessert dessert, but I’ll talk about that later.

My Lumberjack meal was a big buttermilk pancake with chopped bacon mixed into the batter.

It came with two eggs (I chose sunny-side up), and a large pitcher of maple syrup.  I appreciated that, because I’m a maple syrup fiend and Aunt Jemima’s simply will not do.  Because they’re so easy to make at home, I rarely order pancakes in a restaurant, but the phrase “bacon-stuffed” captured my heart and I had to get it.  This particular cake o’ the pan was fluffy, deep golden brown, and made from scratch.  If you order a restaurant pancake only once in a blue moon, make it this one.

Anna’s Steveston Platter came with bacon, sausage, grilled tomatoes, sourdough toast, eggs, baked beans, and hashbrowns.  All it needed was some fried mushrooms and black pudding, and she’d have had a full-on English fry.  The hashbrowns were tossed in a salty, ranch-like seasoning, of which I thoroughly approved.

Chris’s Florentine Eggs Benedict with spinach and tomato were good – not the best I’ve had – but still tasty.  Portion-wise, the plates were filling but not gluttonous; just about right for the average appetite.  Chris finished off his plate and the rest of my pancake, but he’s a 6’7” guy with more stomach to feed than most of us.

We finished off with carrot cake, which came from their mix & match lunch menu (there’s one section in which you can choose 3 items for $10, or they’re $4 each).  It was good cake and icing, though they’d heated it up and it was a little too hot to eat at first.

And finally, because we couldn’t resist, we ordered a boozy milkshake – the “Grandma’s L’il Secret,” to be specific.  It had Butterscotch Schnapps, Maker’s Mark bourbon, caramel sauce, milk, and ice cream.

It was GOOD, and on Mondays, they’re on for $7!

You can also get them the old-fashioned way (i.e., Maker’s Mark and Schnapps free), as well as sundaes and desserts like apple pie.  This restaurant does tasty, classic diner food; they’re not trying to be earth-shatteringly creative, just provide satisfying dishes at reasonable prices in a friendly atmosphere.  If I lived in Steveston, I’d definitely wander over here on a lazy Sunday, sink into a booth with friends, and spend hours sipping coffee, sharing plates of salty/sweet food, and reminiscing over our weekend adventures.  To me, this is the definition of a good brunch, and exactly what Chris, Anna, and I enjoyed.

During weekdays they serve breakfast until 11:30am, and brunch until 4pm on weekends.  They also have a lunch and dinner menu with burgers, sandwiches, and “comfort classics” like Mac n’ Cheese and the Roast Beef Yorkie.  Maybe I’ll have to make it 366 meals in 365 days, because how will I be able to pass those up in the middle of winter?  Apparently they’re also on the verge of a menu shake-up, so watch for new items to appear soon.  There are rumours of pulled pork pancakes……

And now, question period – what are your ALL-TIME FAVOURITE breakfast dishes??

 

 

Diner No. 1

12251 No. 1 Road, Richmond BC 

604-284-5002

Cash and cards accepted

Vegetarian options available

 

 

20 Comments

  1. cwid

    Diner No. 1 is a very cozy place and what’s great is if you are dining alone, they have a small TV set in each booth to entertain you. What I consider a special treat is going out for brunch in a place that smells of pancakes and syrup as you get into the door. That somehow gets me into a holiday mood. Those lumberjack pancakes look so good they might be worth a trip to Richmond very soon.

    Reply
  2. Margot

    No 1 has been on my radar for a bit now… thanks for the review! You have boosted my confidence in AM eateries.

    Reply
  3. Netty

    YUM! There should be more places that sell boozey breakfast milkshakes! :)

    Reply
  4. Rosie

    I’ve always enjoyed breakfast at the Steveston Hotel :) One of their pancakes is bigger than the size of your face!

    Eggs Benny is definitely my favourite breakfast item to order!

    Reply
  5. tanya bones

    Have you gone to Cimona’s yet? That’s always a fave brunch and lunch spot for me. They’re SUPER consistent and home-y :) My experiences with Diner No.1 have been DREADFUL, but by the looks of your brunch, it might be time for me to give them another chance.

    Reply
  6. Kevin

    Pat’s Galley is my favourite. Unpretentious and just basically well-cooked breakfasts. At Diner No. 1, when you order hash browns you basically get whole potatoes on your plate. They don’t give you the option of the shredded variety…which are hash browns:)Not a fan.

    Reply
  7. stacey

    Hi Lindsay!
    Last week, I went to the Hog Shack (BBQ restaurant in Steveston)…..and had an amazing stack of corn/chive pancakes with layers of pulled pork inbetween, topped with bacon maple syrup…..it was to die for and I highly recommend if you feel like sweet meat and something totally over the top!

    Keep up with the great work! My list of places to eat and foods to try in Richmond is increasing 10 fold with your blog!

    Reply
  8. Evan

    Gudrun in steveston has the best brunch anywhere in Richmond. No contest. Chocolate bacon waffles anyone?

    Reply
  9. C.Lee

    My favorite breakfast items are Tocilog Longsilog and Bangsilog from Kumare Richmond.

    Reply
  10. Steveston Girl

    Pat’s Galley is my breakfast place. Try as I might, I gave No. 1 Diner 4 tries. All tries left me not impressed. I found the food very mediocre. I was there and the restaurant was empty. I ordered grilled cheese and it took over 1/2 hour because the cook burnt it, also I could see the kitchen and he had very long hair and no hairnet. The servers are very nice, but that’s all I can say about it. Not a place I would go to on a Sunday or any other day of the week. Too bad, I was cheering them on to make a go of it. Most days when I walk by, it is empty. What does that say?

    Reply
  11. Veronika

    Was just here for lunch on Saturday and was actually thinking you should check it out and review it! We had the Canuck burger (delicious!) and liver and onions. Both were good but my husband did miss the usual cooked onions on his liver which were replaced by crispy shoe string onions. I also couldn’t resist a float. Classic. I’m definitely enjoying your blog although I must admit I get excited when there’s a blog on a non Asian cuisine.

    Reply
  12. Barbara Purcell

    Three visits to No. 1 and “three strikes your out”. Terrible food, wrong order arrived, then it was burnt…..never again.

    Reply
  13. Nicky B

    I had high hopes for Diner No 1 but despite several tries i am done trying. Cannery Cafe for breakfast – do it!!! Take a local with you.

    Reply
  14. grayelf

    I’ve never heard of warming carrot cake up –didn’t the icing melt?

    Good to have another breakfast option in Steveston, thanks for the writeup!

    Reply
  15. LB

    Unfortunately one of the worst restaurant food experiences I’ve ever had and I’m easy going but will never go back. The concept is good… that’s about it.

    Reply
  16. Gillian

    We’ve been to Diner No. 1 a few times and have enjoyed ourselves. I completely agree with Lindsay’s conclusion that it’s decent food, if not very creative. And I’m ok with that. The service is always great, and they are very understanding when our toddler runs around inspecting everyone else’s food. They also happily take our order for our toddler’s dinner the second we sit down, and then come back for our order a little later. We’ve never had a bad meal there. We will try it for brunch now.

    Reply
  17. Jessica

    I’ve had a few rough experiences here, but most recently when I decided to give it another try, I was pleasantly surprised! My Breakfast was hot and came out quick. Looks like things might be turning around there?

    Reply
  18. Oz

    Couldn’t hate Diner No. 1 any harder. Have given them four chances, each is worse than the last. Terribly prepared food, they always screw up the order, they’re slow as hell, the TVs at every table are a constant annoyance and the servers are about 14 years old.
    Gudrun does a hell of a brunch – best in steveston by a mile. Cannery and Cimona are good enough – never leave those places feeling anything but satisfied, but Diner No. 1.. they must have known you were coming.

    Reply
  19. Katie

    Diner no 1 is now closed :(

    Reply

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