Small Town Cafes – The Best Breakfast You’ve Never Had

It’s been five hours since we stopped at Lona’s Corner Cafe for breakfast and I am still stuffed!  Lona’s Corner Cafe is a tiny restaurant in an even tinier town that serves breakfast and lunch.  I drive by this cafe everyday that I go to work, and have always thought “someday we have to eat there”.  Well, since the goal of this website is to stop the “somedays” and “next times” I decided today was that day.

Lona's Corner Cafe

Small town dining at it’s best! Yes, they were closed when I snapped the picture.

The parking lot was jammed full when we arrived, so we ended up getting a short walk in before breakfast.  I reached toward the door, and notice the small sign that says “we do not accept credit cards”.  Oh. No.  I only do credit cards and carry very little cash.  I told the kids, just a sec, and checked my wallet.  Ok, I had $27.  We’ll take a chance.

We went inside and grabbed one of the two empty tables.  You could also sit at a counter, just like you’re supposed to in a small town cafe like this.

The waiter brought our menus and I asked about writing a check.  He said, “no problem”.  Now we were good.

The menu had the basics and some kicked-up choices.  Cream cheese stuffed french toast with fruit seemed to be a favorite, but then the pancake special was strawberry rhubarb pancakes.

My seven year old said she wanted one pancake, I checked the price and it said 75 cents.  What?  I could handle that!  Then she asked for a $3.50 side of bacon.  Oh, well.

My eleven year old decided she wanted to try a little bit of everything and ordered two of the 75 cent pancakes with strawberries and whipped cream on top.  She also wanted scrambled eggs and toast.  So that’s what she got.  Her meal came and she said “whoa”.

Pancakes and eggs

Breakfast times two.

I couldn’t decide what to order, I knew everything would be good.  Since I love a good omelet, that’s what I ordered.  I had a campfire omelet that had bacon, cheese, onion and hash browns in it.  It was huge, and I have leftovers for later.

Omelet

The Campfire Omelet

The cafe also served pie, homemade of course, and caramel rolls.  There was a special called a “fisherman’s breakfast bowl” and the french toast special was called cinnaburst.

One waiter was constantly making the rounds and refilling coffee cups, and being asked about his mom.  Small towns are like that.

How many places do you see on a daily basis that you wonder about but just pass on by?  I have a few, we probably all do.  Whether it’s a cafe, store, or small town attraction we need to stop in and explore, eat, visit, or shop.

Even if you live in a big city, there are still “small town” cafes to stop at for breakfast.

There’s Lou Mitchell’s in Chicago.  Walk in and you’ll be given milk duds and donut holes.  Then you’ll sit down to a really great meal.

St. Paul, MN has Mickey’s Diner.  Yes, it’s a real dining car and probably the smallest place you’ve ever dined in besides your own dining room.  The blueberry pancakes are some of the best!

Stillwater, MN has the Oasis Cafe where you can order pancakes that are bigger than the plate.  Plus, the kids get a chance to play tic tac toe against an employee for a free meal.

Every city has one, that diner, cafe or coffee shop that’s been there forever!

Which one’s are your favorite?  I’m sure someday I’ll be hungry enough to eat again!

Stop driving by those small town cafes!  You may be missing out on a big breakfast that could be the best you've ever had!

13 Comments

  • Juile A January 10, 2018 at 8:35 am

    I’m in Stillwater for a half-day almost every year. Will definitely check out the Oasis Cafe next time. And have my daughter practice her tic-tac-toe before. Thanks for the tip!

    Reply
    • Vicki January 10, 2018 at 6:38 pm

      You’re welcome Julie! Unfortunately there were no free meals for my kids…

      Reply
  • Meagan September 1, 2017 at 11:29 am

    Mmmmm I could eat brunch alllllll day! Looks like a heck of a meal 🙂 And I love small-town atmosphere like that. For just a second, you feel like a part of the family.

    Reply
    • Vicki September 1, 2017 at 11:35 am

      Totally agree with everything you said!

      Reply
  • Joline August 31, 2017 at 9:45 pm

    I love places like this. Not only because it reminds me of Stars Hollow lol but they always taste homemade delicious and so authentic!

    Reply
    • Vicki September 1, 2017 at 6:20 am

      Yes!

      Reply
  • Ariana August 31, 2017 at 3:53 pm

    I haven’t had the chance to travel like I want to yet, but visiting small towns across the world and eating yummy food is on my to do list! Great blog post.

    Reply
    • Vicki August 31, 2017 at 3:59 pm

      Thank you! Start with some small towns close to home and venture further each time!

      Reply
  • Rachel Ritlop August 31, 2017 at 10:47 am

    I couldn’t agree more! Sometimes those little, local dives are hidden gems!

    Reply
    • Vicki August 31, 2017 at 10:51 am

      Yes, best breakfast ever!

      Reply
  • April@LoveOurRealLife August 31, 2017 at 10:15 am

    Small town cafes often have the most amazing food!

    Reply
    • Vicki August 31, 2017 at 10:40 am

      You know the food (and coffee) has to be good, when the parking lot is full every morning!

      Reply
  • 10 Easy Ways to Add Some Family Fun to Your Monday-Thursday - That Was A First June 28, 2017 at 9:50 pm

    […] have to stop there”.  Well, this is the day. If you’ve been curious about a small cafe in town, stop in for a piece of pie.  Is there a new store in town? Today is the day to check it […]

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