If I visited a different diner for breakfast every weekend for the next 147 years, I might come close to sitting at most of the diner counters in the Delaware Valley. Seriously. We all know that diners are a dime a dozen in our area, and diner food is unfortunately just diner food at a lot of them. But sometimes you discover a place that is extra special, and I’m not just talking about the food, but also in the charm and appeal factor. I’ve eaten quite a few diner breakfasts in the last 10 months since moving here, and it’s always a treat to find a place that’s just a little bit unique. That’s what I found when I recently had breakfast on a Tuesday morning at Daddypops in Hatboro.
When you think about old school diners, Daddypops is probably just the kind of place that immediately comes to mind. It’s truly the most “diner-ish” diner I’ve encountered so far. But it’s also very different. Sure, the shiny chrome exterior screams classic diner, but the funky wishing well out front and the surroundings of main-drag Hatboro are a little out of the ordinary. Inside is the long, narrow dining area with the tight booths on one side and a long counter & stools on the other.
But then they mix in the crazy barbershop chairs at the corners of the counter, and beyond that is a collection of coffee mugs brought in by the regulars, so that they can sip coffee from their own mug every time they visit.
There’s also all kinds of nostalgia going on, a lot of which you might expect from a place like this…antique cash registers, a working jukebox, and lots more! Oh, and you can’t miss the auto’d Guy Fieri poster from when he filmed a segment for Diner’s, Drive-In’s and Dives here back in 2008 (watch the whole segment HERE)!!
I have to be fair and honest, and tell you that Daddypops breakfast menu is certainly not the largest or most creative I’ve ever seen, by far. But for what they lack in originality in their menu, I feel that they certainly make up for in execution of their food. That being said, there was one item on the menu that I can honestly say I have NEVER seen on a breakfast menu: the option of a side of baked beans. Seriously, you can substitute your fried potatoes or grits for a bowl of baked beans. I wasn’t brave enough to do it, but was certainly intrigued.
First up was the Brioche French Toast w/ eggs & sausage ($8.45). There were several different options for this platter (different meats, eggs/no eggs, etc.) so it was sort of like a build-your-own. It started as 3 big slices of cinnamon-vanilla french toast, which were grilled nicely on the flat top and sprinkled with powdered sugar. We added scrambled eggs and sausage for an extra cost. I hate it when a restaurant serves butter and syrup in those little disposable packets, so I’ll have to ding them a little for that, but honestly everything was solid and well-cooked.
The sausage links were really, really delicious. When they came out, you could tell immediately that they were not your run-of-the-mill links. I’m not sure where they get them, but they were really plump and meaty, with very little filler. The casings were tight and popped when you cut or bit into them, and the inside was really flavorful.
The Sausage Gravy & Biscuit ($7.10) breakfast was a big plate of classic breakfast goodness. The split biscuit was topped with a huge portion of creamy gravy, and it came with my choice of either some really yummy fried potatoes or beans.
The menu doesn’t specify how many biscuits come with an order, so I was a little sad when it arrived with one biscuit on the plate. However, looking back, I don’t know if I could have finished a second biscuit after all. The gravy was pretty thick and hardy, and the potatoes made up for whatever might have been missing. The gravy was perfectly peppery and really flavorful, and consistency was good, although I prefer it a little chunkier.
The biscuit itself was fresh and moist, and held up really well under all of that gravy. It was breakfast comfort food in all its glory. Overall, certainly a solid dish that I wouldn’t hesitate to order again.
Pro Tip: Daddypops is a cash only diner, but don’t worry…if you walk in without some greens, they have an ATM on site.
One more thing about Daddypops that I cannot overlook mentioning: The staff here was probably some of the nicest folks I’ve encountered at an eatery in a while. Our waitress (I can’t remember her name for the life of me) was extremely friendly and courteous, and provided some of the most efficient service I’ve had in ages. One of the cooks, who left the kitchen to use the restroom, stopped on his way back to ask if everything was just how we liked it (and I don’t think this guy had a clue I was there taking pictures and reviewing the food). Even the other patrons – the regulars who sat at the counter and joked with the servers – were friendly and welcoming, including us in a few laughs. I’m tempted to say that even if the food was just “meh” (which it certainly wasn’t), I would come back again just for the atmosphere and the service. That’s how good it was.