phx: welcome diner closed til october, will reopen as welcome diner 2.0
this saturday was another crazy packed farmers market. by the time we left at 9:30, we were ready for some breakfast. we counted 17 people standing outside of matt's. forget that!!!
so we went to welcome diner. pete was there and as happy and chatty as usual. it was a non-stop parade of regulars coming in for their welcome diner fix because they are closing for the summer, and it was their last day...
so pete told us they'll also be starting work at their new location. they're going to be specializing in hot dogs and donuts. yummy!!
the other bombshell - they're going to completely re-vamp the welcome diner - repaint, remodel, and redo the whole concept. they're currently debating : late night hours *since there are 3 sets of new condos walking distance from them, and they'll be done soon to kick the neighborhood up a notch*, beglian frites with specialty sauces, blue plate dinner specials, and a couple of other options.
we begged, BEGGED him to keep the current menu in some form, because they're so well loved for their burgers, fries and hotdogs. he smiled and said 'thank you, and we'll see'.
sooooooooooooo.........im glad i got my welcome diner fix in, and i'm very curious to see what happens when they open up again in october.
welcome diner 2.0 - i'm trusting his good taste and skills in the kitchen. i know it'll be good but man, i hope they keep those fries.
Boy, this just leaves a knot in the pit of my stomach. Anyone who watched "Feasting on Asphalt" last summer on Food Network and saw the first episode learned the first lesson when you have a successful concept: leave it alone and don't branch out beyond it. Second lesson: The owner always needs to be on site.
One of the whole pleasures of Welcome Diner is it's utter simplicity. Burgers, hot dogs, fries, and a few oddball other things at decent prices. Monkey around with the concept at the new location. Leave the original the hell alone.
That's my pair of Lincolns.
I find the idea that the menu might be changed to be distressing. I wish WD 2.0 only the best and that everything will be top notch, but I am always apprehensive when I see this dialogue:
Patron: We all love your burgers and fries and the current menu. It is excellent and keeps us coming back.
Owner: Thank you very much. Wait until you see the new menu!
re: Seth Chadwick
I agree with you, Seth, but ... I can hardly believe that enough money is being made from that tiny space with limited hours, good ingredients, and small tickets, to support even one person, let alone an owner and an employee or two. It was good while it lasted -- let's hope it evolves into a viable business with great chow.
I agree with you, too. I can't imagine how the doors stay open considering the tiny space.
And I certaiinly don't begrudge the owner from looking to enhance the place as far as a new paint job or the addition of a patio or expansion of the dining area. But why tamper with the menu? That already has a proven track record and can easily be used to turn profits. As winedubar stated, she begged the owner to keep the menu. That was the draw. Expand around that because all the glossy paint and pretty curtains and shiny surfaces isn't going to keep you in business if your menu isn't appealing.
I guess I don't understand why you would discard known success in lieu of taking a chance on the unknown.