A Sunday of errands means an early morning drive this week as we head west in search of a decent car wash. Living in downtown Richmond has its disadvantages when it comes to finding all of life’s “don’t feel like doin’ it myself” service options. Know of a good shoe repair and shine place?
At any rate, with a rough agenda set and deciding not to spend thirty minutes searching the web for a breakfast, we found ourselves in Richmond suburbia looking for the most important meal of the day. Silver Diner is located on West Broad Street at Cox Road in Glen Allen. This was our second time at the Diner although the first hardly qualifies for actual breakfast given the late night hours of the previous visit.
Sunday morning at a quarter of 9 is breakfast. The first impression walking in at that time of the day on a Sunday was “oh my God what was I thinking?” It’s a 50’s style Diner and jukeboxes are everywhere. Even a flat screen TV with music videos greets you walking in the door. I gladly took my place at the bar right behind the coordinator’s station for a full view of all the action and prayed for a quiet hour.
Within an hour the Diner was bustling with tons of customers and servers. I arrived at a good time for a seat, not a quiet read nor fast meal.
In business school, they teach you about “bottlenecks” in operations. Silver Diner has a classic bottleneck: the coordinator. We observed many servers standing around watching the coordinator slammed with too many tickets and plates to move them to the tables fast enough. Even the manager wearing nice slacks and a shiny watch seemed unphased while his employee struggled to keep up.
The service to the counter wasn’t that better either. I think I saw my server three times. Oh, make that four. Once to take my drink order. Once to take my order. Once to check on my meal progress. Once to cash me out. Someone else filled my coffee only after asking. Actually it was another server who decided to help out the coordinator when realizing my plate went to a person sitting directly behind the coordinator station.
The cooking clearly isn’t an issue at Silver Diner. The cooks were fast and the meal was surprisingly still hot when I got it, a product of my order. I ordered the spinach feta omelet which comes with a bagel and potatoes. Silver Diner allows the potatoes to be substituted out with fresh fruit but we decided not to overburden the coordinator with that change. Maybe next time if I can get in at 7am when it’s not busy I’ll go the fruit route.
The bagel was fresh and toasted just right. The potatoes were crispy and well seasoned. The omelet was loaded with spinach and cheese. The prep and plate were good.
Actually it is the cooking that is saving this review. If I hadn’t gotten a good plate of food, Silver Diner wouldn’t be a place getting a nod. Just when you go, understand you’re in there for a while if its busy. Don’t plan to do much reading either. Overall this was a good breakfast meal and most likely we’ll go back again to try the monster french toast.
LAN Breakfast Review: 3 out of 5 Stars.