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Aug 7, 2009 07:48 AM

Capitol Hill--Greasy Spoon Breakfast Spots?

We've been taking out car to a mechanic on Capitol Hill for many years. We always bring the car in Saturday mornings and try to grab some breakfast while they perform repairs. In the past, we went to Bread and Chocolate and most recently tried Le Pain Quotidien. Those places are wholly unsatisfying (and stupidly expensive) for the type of breakfast we like. We like the kinda spots that have cheap breakfast and include packaged deals...think 'Breakfast #1: two eggs any style, choice of meat, homefries or grits, toast, and coffee' for $5.95. No mimosas, no $16 frittatas, no soft-shelled crab benedict, etc. Gimme some corned beef hash, some fried eggs, and some buttery grits.

I searched the board and came up with nuthin'. I know there's the Market Lunch joint in Eastern Market, but that's a hassle...all the interns and general crowds and hurried service and inability to linger. Blech. We want a place where we can have a second cup of coffee and linger over the paper and not feel like we're being watched over.

Anything like this exist? Jimmy T.'s?

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  1. Pete's Diner, at 212 2nd St. SE, is exactly the kind of place you're looking for. They have breakfast #1-4 (or maybe 5), grits, corned beef hash, the whole deal. Plus, it's run by a group of women who are, I think, from Cambodia (?), and they have some interesting specials if you happen not to be in the mood for breakfast one Saturday. Jimmy T's is also good, but I prefer Pete's.

    One thing to keep in mind -- it's cash only.

    1 Reply
    1. re: hannahcat

      I 2nd Pete's Diner. I love that place.

      Jimmy T's is good as well. Just be aware that they are cash only (at least they were the last time I was there about 4 years ago and I had an embarrassing experience of running around looking for an ATM only to find out my card had expired that exact day and I had to track down money from a friend...oy!)

    2. The Tune Inn, at 4th and Pennsylvania, definitely has the greasy spoon, almost creepy, vibe (you may feel watched over, but not because you're lingering), but they make a really good corned beef hash, and do the el cheapo eggs and bacon thing also.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Tujague

        /tune Inn creepy? I never get that feel, if anything the longtime waitress/bartender is almost ttoo attentive if she's not too busy. price might be a dollar or 2 above what you're looking for.

        Jimmy T's can get backed up on the weekend and they close early-ish. but so classic.

        1. re: hill food

          Thanks to all who weighed in.

          My wife reminded me that we tried Pete's Diner before and found it pretty meh. I think they've got the right idea, but the execution was way off.

          So, this time, we tried Jimmy T's Place. It fit the bill. Everything was fine. That's about all we were after...fine. Pancake was good. Fried eggs were actually not too greasy. That was a nice surprise. The patty sausage showed itself to be from a vacuum packed tube (I got an end piece with the little pinch marks on it), but was still tasty. Only legitimate complaint was about the 'home fries.' These were a total joke. A side order was about nine slices of barely cooked potatoes. No seasoning. No onions. No crispy bits. Home fries or hash browns are my favorite and these were not worth even the very minimal amount they charged ($1.15).

          Thanks again. I think Jimmy T's Place will be the new 'go-to' spot when we get the oil changed.

          1. re: jfw

            I like Tuncliff's for solid non-frou frou breakfast. They have good eggs and homefries.