Wild Berry Diner in Mesa: Take A Grandparent Along
We'd heard such good things about Wild Berry Diner we were willing to drive all the way to a far-flung corner of Mesa. Sadly, we don't plan to return -- unless Grandma and Grandpa come to town.
The early American building is located on Greenfield and Main in Mesa -- an area highly populated with silver hairs. We're not saying that's a bad thing, it's just not what we expected from a place with a great reputation. We expected a more... diverse following.
The Sunny Side: With that said, we found many aspects of the spot charming. The owner stopped by almost every table, checking in with his regulars and giving everyone a friendly hello. The servers sweet-talked their tables ending most tableside chats with a "Sure sugar," or "No problem hun." And it was clear that most of the surrounding booths were accommodating regular customers.
The spot is dimly lit with many rooms, and the old-school décor is nothing to write home about. We found ourselves a comfy booth and settled in for a comprehensive read of their long menu. While most items have some sort of Greek flair (the owner is Greek), the diner offers a wide variety of breakfast goodies from southwestern to Italian. We decided to try the Espanola: a southwestern omelet with green chilies, diced onions, chorizo, and topped with cheddar cheese. It also came with toast and hash browns.
Our mouths dropped when the huge breakfast platter arrived. We had no idea we'd be getting such a large portion. The huge helping of hash browns pretty much made our day (score!). They were crispy and salty -- just how we like 'em. The toast was pretty standard but good, and we appreciated that it was merely lightly buttered (who likes soggy toast!?). The omelet was large and very -- we mean VERY -- cheesy.
Save Your Bacon: Truthfully, we were a little disappointed with the omelet. You really can't go wrong with heaps of cheese so we were satisfied, but the chilies and onions weren't very flavorful. It was fluffy and well-prepared, but there was nothing exciting about it. We also would have appreciated a bit more personality, youth, and décor. Wild Berry seriously needs a makeover.
The Check: The food is good. It's nothing amazing, but it's
inexpensive ($5-$10) and the helpings are huge. We just don't suggest
planning your next hipster hangout there.
Get the Food & Drink Newsletter
Our weekly guide to Phoenix dining includes food news and reviews, as well as dining events and interviews with chefs and restaurant owners.