It was a cold and stormy day in Vancouver... Yes, not really a stretch in October, but there I was, all alone with food on my mind. I drove around aimlessly looking for the next food adventure. There were ideas floating around, yet I did not have the effort level to follow through. Essentially, I pulled a David Booth, lots of dash with no finish. Finally, I ended up nearby at a place I've driven by countless times. Parkcrest Diner, this would be the day I visit you.
I do believe this would be the first time I describe a Clam Chowder as "crunchy". Sadly, the veggies, in particular the onions and celery, were not cooked enough (or not at all). Hence, the soup did not have any depth either. It was like drinking a watered-down Mott's with uncooked veggies and some clams here and there. Thankfully, the Pork Cutlets were quite good. Although they were thin, the meat was not dry and exhibited a tender chewiness. It was lightly dusted with flour and fried up crisp. The gravy was pretty typical, but it did the job providing moisture to the potatoey mash. The frozen veggie mix was a bit pale, yet was not overly mushy.
On another visit, I had the House Burger consisting of a thin beef patty, lettuce, tomato, processed cheese and fried egg on a sesame bun. This was not rocket science by any stretch because one could easily make this at home. However, for $5.95 including a side of crispy fries, I wasn't complaining. In the end, it was a decent homestyle burger although the meat was a bit dry due to its thinness. I decided to get Combo B (Chicken Fried Rice and Sweet & Sour Pork) to go and it included a Chicken Noodle Soup. It was quite light while packed with celery, carrots, onions and noodles. Nothing amiss here, but it could've used more seasoning.
As for the combo, it was pretty typical of a Chinese-run diner. The rice was dry and chewy with lots of chicken. It had a decent amount of wok heat (including some burnt parts) which meant the flavours were caramelized. The fact that the sweet & sour pork was not radioactive in colour was refreshing to see. It was decent, yet not incredibly flavourful either. The best way to describe Parkcrest Diner would be value eats. Nothing more than expected and nothing less, all for a low price.
- Where everybody knows your name (well, if you are a regular that is...)
- Acceptable eats for the price
- Won't be mistakened for great food