Crown Railroad Cafe (Flagstaff, AZ)
After a snowy couple of nights in Flagstaff, AZ, we decided to venture out and try a local spot for breakfast before making a quick trip to the Grand Canyon and traveling to our HelpX spot in Colorado. We happened upon The Crown Railroad Cafe as we drove old Route 66 out of town, and since it looked like a neat place, we decided to test out their breakfast options.
The Crown Railroad Cafe has a very old-fashioned diner kind of feel. There is a counter with padded chrome bar stools facing into the kitchen. Each booth along the outer edges of the restaurant is named for a railroad – like the White Pass and Yukon.
There are old metal signs for various railroads decorating the walls, and a model trail runs along the top of the restaurant’s walls. Outside, an active train line stays busy across Route 66. However, the music at The Crown Railroad Cafe is definitely not old-fashioned: Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, and Tom Petty all played over the speakers while we ate.
Chorizo, Onion, Green Chili, & Cheese Omelet
We both opted for one of the “jumbo three egg” omelets for breakfast, which come with a choice of “those” potatoes or hash browns and toast or a buttermilk biscuit. As for the omelets themselves, there are 66 different options listed on their menu – if you like omelets, you’ll be hard-pressed not to find something that strikes your fancy.
Scott opted for an omelet with chorizo, onions, green chili and cheese, plus “those” potatoes and a biscuit with gravy on the side (but more on those in a bit). The omelet was stuffed full of some decently spicy chorizo plus plenty of onions, green chili and cheese. And this was clearly a three egg omelet – it was LARGE. The green chili added flavor without adding any kick.
Sausage, Onion, Green Chili, & Cheese Omelet
Edie opted for a similar omelet, switching out the chorizo for regular breakfast sausage but keeping the other ingredients the same. She went with “those” potatoes and a buttermilk biscuit on the side, minus any gravy.
Again, the omelet was HUGE and stuffed full. No skimping on the sausage either, which added great flavor without too much spice. Same thing with the green chili – great flavor addition without too much heat (though perhaps a little spiciness would have been okay!).
When we looked at the side options on the menu, “those” potatoes caught our attention. How can you not try a dish deserving of quotation marks?
Turns out that “those” potatoes are pretty darn good. They are just your basic diced skillet potatoes with red & green peppers and onions, plus some spices. They were perfectly browned and crispy with a nice level of flavor and spiciness. No wonder they are their specialty.
Buttermilk Biscuits and Gravy
Is there anything better than a fluffy, buttermilk biscuit fresh from the oven? Not when you’re hungry for breakfast!
The biscuits at Crown Railroad were huge, moist and, best of all, piping hot from the oven. Scott got his with a side of the gravy (a basic, white sausage gravy), while Edie opted to just dress her biscuit with butter and strawberry jam. The gravy wasn’t bad, but it is nothing to write home about either – it could definitely use more pepper.
Our server Janetta was prompt, knowledgeable and friendly. She answered all of our questions about the menu (specifically, what the heck are “those” potatoes?) and was quick to offer to stop the train if we wanted to get a better picture.
The total bill for our two big omelets, biscuits, gravy, “those” potatoes, tax, and tip came to $24. We’d already snagged coffee from a coffee shop in Flagstaff since we weren’t sure we were going to be stopping for breakfast. Overall, for the amount of food we got, that’s not a bad price at all.
The Doggy Bag, By Knox
Another restaurant meal for my folks, another nap in the truck for me. One day, the restaurant industry will latch on to my great idea, but for now, I’m stuck waiting for leftovers.
However, if leftovers are the only thing I can get, then I’ll take ’em! And the leftovers from The Crown Railroad Cafe were certainly tasty. Scott & Mommy brought me bits of potatoes, egg, sausage, and biscuit…shoved into two tiny little condiment containers. Hey folks, those are a little hard to get into with this big nose! I had to get a little help to get it all out. But it was worth it.