Breakfast Noir at the 5th Avenue Cafe
In an effort to make mom proud, Chow Bella's taking a good, hard look at the most important meal of the day in the form of Scrambled, a weekly review of local breakfast spots.
If this was 1930's L.A., patrons would find a spectacle of gangsters and detectives at the 5th Avenue Café. The old-school, leathery vibe was made for Humphrey Bogart and his gangsters. Pictures of jazz musicians that line the walls only add to the film noir vibe. After discreetly being instructed to seat ourselves, we plopped down in a sunny booth near the entrance and hoped for a peaceful experience.
How was the food? Find out after the jump.
The Sunny Side: The café really creates a neighborhood vibe which is appropriate since the clientele consists of what appears to be ninety percent downtown locals. You can just tell. There are also four TV's tuned in to ESPN which only topped off the masculine, guy-reading-a-newspaper kind of feel. The greasy spoon character also comes with a mysterious musty odor - don't worry, it's part of the territory. The menu offers mostly traditional fare but many with a southwestern dynamic. The prices are what really struck us. $5.50 for an entire days worth of calories is quite the steal.
Most days, we'd say try anything with the word "cowboy" in the name (think chorizo, salsa, eggs and cheese). But still feeling a bit weary toward salsa, we decided to try the bagel sandwich. The only bagel option is plain and it came out extremely buttery - like coat your fingers buttery -- which could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on how you feel about butter. The over-easy egg was cooked to perfection and there was a healthy serving of cheese. We love a crispy, cheap serving of hash browns so we were pleased with the well-done potato strings. However if you're looking for a fresh, moister hash brown option then this is not your place.
Save Your Bacon: The diner really lives up to the greasy spoon designation. Not only did the place smell a bit grimy, the food was extremely greasy. It's great for a hangover; bad for your scale.
The check: Overall The 5th Avenue Café provides a bang for your buck. There are few Phoenix places that offer a fill-up at such a low price. Head to 501 West Thomas Road
for your greasy spoon fix. Call 602-274-0963 for more information.