A local told me about Metro Cafe, but when we tried to go during brunch the line was so long that there was even a line going into their parking lot; a very unusual sight for a place that is attached to a Travelodge! This is one of those neighborhood gems hidden in plain sight, known only by the locals who are willing to ignore the usual association of bad diner food cafes attached to national chain motels. Once I tasted their food, I literally went back for breakfast lunch and dinner within 2 weeks and on one day went back for dinner after eating breakfast there!
Being a Californian cafe, they use local and organic ingredients in several of their items, but what sets them apart for me is the elevated skill of their kitchen to turn out the usual suspects of omelettes, salads, and entrées like lamb chops, into dishes worthy of a detour. Their generous portions, and efficient service have made this a regular stop for many who have their own reserved seats, so call ahead if you want a reservation especially during busy brunch week-end times, or end of the week dinner times.
This plate of ham and eggs looks plain and simple, but the flavor of the ham was accented by the grill, and the potatoes hidden under the toast were nicely crisp. Even garnish of the piece of fruit was ripe and juicy for $13 this was enough for two.
The Serbian Americana for $14 is served with cured meat and mozzarella, a hearty breakfast with a twist on the american meat and cheese.
All their omelettes are $13, and the pesto portabella mushroom was so fluffy and loaded with mushrooms, that I had trouble finishing the eggs, never mind the remainder of the plate.
Lunch of a simple tuna sandwich for $13 with sweet potato fries, was surprisingly tasty with a tuna salad that had the fresh crunch of vegetables, and a light hand with the mayo.
For the vegans and health conscious, they had several options like the farro salad, which you could add chicken, salmon, or steak to for an additional supplement. I added chicken breast for a total of $17 and was surprised at how moist and flavorful the chicken was, with a nice char to complement the hearty salad.
Dinner was equally impressive, with some very decent wines from around the world. Nearly all the entrées are around $30, including the lamb chops with grilled vegetables; when a meat lover eats all the vegetables on the plate, you know they are perfectly seasoned.
The lamb osso bucco was a giant lamb shank, that was my meal for 2 days. That is large slices of cheese on top that were really overkill for the delightfully slow cooked and tender shank.
The gorgeous sea beam was a spectacular sight to behold, along with marvelous roasted vegetables, but it was slightly overcooked. It was a very large portion for the price of $28, and I was impressed that they served the entire fish rather than just a filet.