I expected John’s Café, the recently reopened lower Greenville diner, to be another greasy-spoon joint. However, when I entered, slid into a booth with a map of Greece (in Greek) on the wall beside it and dictated my order to an old Greek guy, I quickly realized it wasn’t.
John’s Café first opened in 1972, but was forced to close in 2005. Back by popular demand, John Spyropoulos moved his restaurant just a few blocks away from the original.
The atmosphere is casual and packed with neighborhood regulars. As customers place orders at the counter, they get a clear view of the industrial kitchen behind.
John chats as he takes orders. He knows many patrons by name, and is not hesitant to talk when business is slow—which is rare. One friendly customer even came to my table, coffee pot in hand, and offered me a refill.
The cooks are efficient. Though the seating area was nearly full, my food arrived in less than ten minutes. Served on simple, stoneware plates that remind me of lunches at grandmas, the food is good. For breakfast, French toast ($3.85) is a great option. Two pleasantly warm pieces, of just the right fluffy texture, dusted with powdered sugar and a hint of cinnamon.
The pancakes ($3.85) are just that, pancakes. John’s does it simple. There are no options for chocolaty-chip-strawberry pancakes with whipped cream and powdered sugar doused with maple syrup. You get your pancake and a slab of butter on the side.
John’s Café is a steal. The Blue Plate Special comes with two eggs, hash browns (which are not greasy at all), toast or biscuits, and a choice of bacon, sausage or ham for $4.65.
Breakfast is served all day, but prices go up after 11 a.m. Popular lunch options include cheeseburgers ($3.95) and club sandwiches ($6.20). Lunch specials change daily.
1733 Greenville Ave, Dallas, TX 75206
Price Range: $$
Forget grocery store salad bars and other health food chains because Greenz is here, and it’s a hit!
Greenz is a quick (but not in a fast-food kind of way) salad place in the Preston Forest shopping center. A friendly cashier, clad in a lime green polo shirt greets you. “Welcome to Greenz,” he says and recommends dishes upon request. The menu offers all kinds of salads in addition to soups and wraps, making the choice difficult.
The décor is simple with bright green walls and purple accents throughout the restaurant. There is plenty of seating, but the tables are not all squished together. The eating area is almost too clean, but perhaps that is a good thing because Greenz is popular among families with young children.
My apple and walnut salad arrived with only a moderate wait time, though any impatience was soon forgotten. Thinly sliced red and green apples topped this mountain of mixed greens.
The apples absorbed some of the champagne vinaigrette, which gave an interesting tang to these fresh, juicy slices. Chopped walnuts were sprinkled around the edge of the salad and when covered in the dressing, tasted wonderful.
Though my salad cost nearly nine dollars, it was filling and in itself was an entire meal. Other popular dishes include The Mediterranean ($8.25) and Grilled Chicken Riviera ($9.25).
2808 McKinney Ave, Dallas, TX 75204
Price Range: $$