Saturday, December 15, 2012

Popping In On Pop N Sons


Pop N Sons Diner
4812 N. Dale Mabry Hwy.
Tampa, FL 33614

I love when a plan gets executed perfectly. We had just gotten off of our cruise ship, and had to high tail it over to our hotel, so we could drop off our bags and get to the Buccaneers game at Raymond James. We checked our bags, and found out that we had about an hour to kill before the one o'clock football game. Since we did not eat breakfast on the boat, this would be the perfect opportunity to find a place to have breakfast. Wanting to avoid the high prices of of stadium food, we asked the girl at the front desk about breakfast spots nearby. She recommended Pop N Sons Diner, so that is where we headed.

We were staying at the Holiday Inn Express, and Pop N Sons is about a five minute walk from the hotel. Pop N Sons is not going to blow you away with their wonderful decor. They definitely play up the 50's diner vibe here, but do not take it to the extremes of having their waitress's wearing poodle skirts or anything. There is some 50's memorabilia on the walls, and fifties rock and roll coming through the speakers. That is just part of the atmosphere here.

You can sense that this place really has a homey vibe to it. We arrived here for our first visit at about 11 on a Sunday morning. As soon as we walked in, the average age of the customers dropped about two decades. Almost every table was packed, but we found one near the back. Everyone that walked in was greeted by name, and told that their coffee or drink of choice was on the way. We were given some time to look over the menu, and this is what we chose to give us energy for the football game.




I grouped these all together because they were all basically the same. The breakfasts here were all pretty standard items you would find in any other diner across the US. I had the Three Eggs, Three Bacon and Three Pancakes ($6.99). The eggs were cooked just the way I wanted them, the bacon was very crisp, and the pancakes were the best part of the breakfast. They were heavy, without being overbearing. They soaked up the maple syrup well, and had a good buttermilk tinge to them. Katie got the Two Eggs with Bacon ($6.59). She had her eggs over easy, and also went with the home fries instead of the hash browns. She thought that the home fries were seasoned well, and were less greasy than she thought they were going to be. Sabrina ordered the Two Eggs and Sausage ($6.59), along with a Fruit Cup ($2.49) that she thought was part of her meal, but wasn't. Way to read the menu correctly Sabrina. She really wanted Anthony to ask the waitress about it, but of course she would have been wrong, as usual.



We actually made two trips to Pop N Sons during our short stay in Tampa. We had a late afternoon flight, so we had lunch here before we went to the airport. Again, the menu for lunch at Pop N Sons is nothing out of the ordinary for a typical diner. Katie has been surprising me with her picks for food on this trip, and her selection of a Tuna Melt ($6.99) was not what I was expecting her to have here either. This tuna melt came on rye, with Swiss cheese. She thought the sandwich was pretty solid. She even went as far as saying that this was one of the best tuna melts she has had in awhile.



I also had a melt, but mine was the Patty Melt ($6.99). This was a very traditional patty melt consisting of ground beef, grilled onions, and Swiss cheese, all on rye bread. The burger patty was pretty thin, but this was a solid tasting patty melt. The bread here was what made this sandwich. It had a great rye flavor, and really went well with this sandwich. The french fries were pretty average, and nothing really to write home about.

Pop N Sons is not anything that is going to wow you. What they will do though, is make you honest, old school meals here. In this age of chain restaurants, places like Pop N Sons are a nice respite from the cookie cutter type places that dot almost every corner, of every town in America. The food here was fine, but what makes it even better is the fact that you are supporting a local business while eating here. Our server Grace knew almost all of her customers names when they walked through the door. That does not happen at your local Chili's or chain restaurant. Pop N Sons is open 24 hours, so whatever time hunger hits, you can maybe bypass Denny's, and try it out for yourself. We struck up a great conversation with the owner, Jerry as we were paying our bill. He seemed to feel that these type of restaurants may soon be a thing of the past. That is really a shame, but the good news is that you still have time to experience true diner food at Pop N Sons.

Out of five weasel's, (because when I hear the word pop, I almost always think of the nursery rhyme, "Pop Goes the Weasel"), five being best to zero being worst, Pop N Sons Diner gets 2.5 weasel's.

To find out more information about Pop N Sons Diner, check them out here: http://skymiles.rewardsnetwork.com/details.htm?merchantId=114904

 Pop n Sons on Urbanspoon

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