The best part of Christmas is spending time with your family. And one of the best things about visiting family who live out of town, is trying the local restaurants where they live. Such is the case with my wife’s family, who live in the borough of Norristown, Pennsylvania. Norristown is what I like to call a “suburb city”, because it could technically be classified as a suburb of Philadelphia, however it is definitely a city all to itself. So after spending 14 hours in the car yesterday (we drove to my sister-in-law’s house in northwestern PA, before driving to Philly) and a good nights sleep, my father-in-law offered to take us all out for a hearty breakfast at Alfredo’s.
Alfredo’s is located on the corner of a main street that runs straight through the historic borough. Like many other businesses in the area, Alfredo’s looks to be a former residential building which was remodeled at some point many years ago, and turned into a commercial location. It’s generally a very common sight around these parts. These tiny shops and eateries give the city its hometown feel, and appeal to the many out-of-towners who travel to and from, as well as its diverse residents. I had been to Alfredo’s once before, several years ago, so when my father-in-law suggested going, I was excited to try this local hot spot again.
The restaurant is actually broken up into two sections. When you first walk through the door, you are immediately in the diner area. If ever there was a “hole-in-the-wall” diner stereotype, Alfredo’s would most certainly fit the bill. The counter with stools, tile floor, server’s pick-up window, paneled walls that have been painted pink and mauve, pictures from the town’s history on the walls, waitresses who know your name and say hello as soon as you walk in…they’re all here. And it’s all part of the charm.
I just love these types of places. You just know that the guys sitting at this counter have been coming here regularly for years. It’s a comfort thing. Same breakfast. Same waitress. Same bar stool. Same conversations.
The second part of Alfredo’s is a small dining room off to the right of the diner. Several tables are available when business is heavy, and they can always push two or three tables together for bigger groups. Again, it’s not fancy, but it’s comfortable.
Most of us didn’t even need to look at a menu, because of the white boards located in both parts of the restaurant, advertising the daily specials that are available. The breakfast menu seems to be fairly extensive, and everything sounded really good!! One thing that I did find a little odd was that this tiny spot sells Pennsylvania Lottery tickets. So I guess if time’s running out on your chance to grab your ticket for the big jackpot, you can stop in and get your numbers, and grab some awesome food at the same time.
Another hallmark of many “greasy spoon” restaurants are the placemats that advertise for local businesses.
Several of us ordered some variation of an eggs, potatoes and meat platter, and everyone’s portion servings were enormous!! I opted for the Biscuits & Gravy special, which came with two eggs (I ordered scrambled) that were cooked just right, home fries with onions, and a half order of bacon. A half order was about six pieces, which I shared with another family member. I would hate to see how big a full order would have been. Nothing on this plate stood out as unique or special, but all of it was very tasty!!
I also got two moist, homemade biscuits and a big bowl of white country gravy that was loaded with cut up sausage links. The gravy was smooth, flavorful and seasoned well. A VERY filling breakfast!!
My brother-in-law ordered something that I had never seen offered for breakfast before, ANYWHERE…the Fish & Eggs platter. Two perfectly fried, beer battered fish fillets, served with home fries with onions, two eggs and toast. Very interesting. I may order this myself next time we visit, just so that I can say I’ve eaten it
This is another breakfast special that I don’t know if I’ve ever seen…the Asparagus & Cheese Omelette special, served with home fries with onions, and toast. My sister-in-law says it is always delicious.
My six-year-old son ordered traditional pancakes with real maple syrup. His wish was for three little pancakes (which he would probably never eat anyway), but we were told they didn’t have a kids breakfast that included three pancakes, so we ordered a “regular” order. Each of these flapjacks were as big around as his head, and they brought him a stack of four of them. Needless to say, most of these came home in a box for another meal.
My wife ordered the Bacon & Cheese Omelette breakfast platter. This huge omelette was loaded with 8-10 whole slices of bacon inside, and was served with home fries with onions and rye toast. She said the flavor was outstanding!! The bacon was salty, the eggs fluffy, and the cheese gooey. All good things in her opinion.
We were all stuffed when we left Alfredo’s. The food was all pretty standard fare, and was done very well. I was told by the family members who are frequent customers, that sometimes their service is lacking, but they return to Alfredo’s because the good food, generous portions and cheap prices far outweigh the negative. They were a little slow today, but not terrible by any stretch. We attributed it to them being busier than normal because of the Christmas travelling crowd. Nevertheless, another visit to Alfredo’s is definitely in order on our next trip.
Alfredo’s Restaurant is located at 1132 W. Main St., Norristown, PA 19401. They are open Mon – Sun, 6:00AM – 8:00PM, and serve breakfast all day!! You can learn more about them, or contact them with questions on their Facebook page.