The best way to start the day

Breakfast Smackdown: Oaks Diner and The Grotto are two popular breakfast spots in Cave Creek. The CS Press visited both restaurants to determine which one has the best food, prices, and service.

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The best way to start the day

Logan McDade

Logan McDade

Logan McDade

Hope Black, staff writer

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Oaks Diner and the Grotto are two popular breakfast spots down in Cave Creek. The CS Press visited both restaurants to determine which one has the best food, prices, and service.

Oak’s Diner and Flapjacks is a well-known, eatery located in the heart of Cave Creek. Serving breakfast and lunch every day of the week, it’s open from seven in the morning until two in the afternoon.

The inside of Oaks Diner has an old-school western setting with tables and booths surrounding the perimeter of the building. When entering the restaurant, to the left is the open kitchen where the cooks can get a feel of how their customers seems all while feeling less separated from the crowd. The cashier is next to the door, serving the initial, in my opinion,elderly vibe, that greets you at the door.

The service was slow, but understandable considering that there were very few servers on the clock at the time. Our server took around 15 to 20 minutes to take our order. She was also all over the place, and when a friend ordered water, it took around 15 minutes to arrive.

In comparison to the amount of time it took to have our order taken, it didn’t take long until the food was in our arms’ reach.

We ordered combinations of french toast, scrambled eggs, and veggie omelets.

The french toast plate was perfectly cooked and fluffy to my liking. The hash browns were a bit overcooked, but still left a good impression on our group. The winning plate, though, had to be the sausage. It had a classic flavor of grease mixed with the perfect combination of savory versus sweet.

Displaying a completely different feel, the Grotto Cafe embodied what an A+ review on Yelp would look like. They are open from 6 am to 5 pm everyday and serve breakfast and lunch.

As you pull into the lot, there are several spaces to park your car, giving you the option of sun or shade, pavement or dirt, and easy access to the many side entrances. There is an outdoor patio that connects the cafe and The Red Truck Trading Company, a second hand store that neighbors it. From the patio seats, there is spectacular view of Black mountain and a lush garden to compliment it.

When we entered, we were immediately greeted with behind-the-counter service, where orders are taken, then you are free to choose your desired seat.

The walls inside are covered in vintage music posters and knick-knacks, giving off a retro feel in a clean-cut, modern space.

At the Grotto, the food we ordered was a french toast plate, a lox bagel, and a breakfast burrito. The food arrived fast and our server remembered to check up on us here and there.

In my opinion, the french toast could have been better. It came with a side of turkey sausage and a fruit salad, but the only appetizing selection was the fruit. The french toast was covered in caramel, deeming it difficult to get rid of the excess sauce. Although, if you’re a fan of caramel, this french toast could be compared to heaven.

Based on my experience, both restaurants would receive an above average grade from me, but Oaks would win in regards to the food. The Grotto appeals in its effort to create a comfortable and likeable setting, but if you prefer more of a classic, mom-and-pop meal, Oaks Diner wins that category.

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