Tommy's Diner attracts a diverse crowd, and children fit nicely into the mix.
THE MOM SAYS
Tommy's Diner attracts a diverse crowd.
You're as likely to see a Statehouse politician as a construction worker. People of all walks of life sit side by side at the counter of the 1950s-style diner.
Owner Tommy Pappas, clad in a white apron, is often at the door greeting patrons and directing traffic. He walks through the restaurant chit-chatting and glad-handing diners.
Children fit nicely into the mix. They will like the memorabilia of local and Hollywood celebrities that fills the wall. The bright red booths, silver stools and cool neon signs create a fun vibe.
Much of the menu reflects Pappas' Greek heritage. The menu offers gyro sandwiches and a Greek salad and omelet. Tommy's serves breakfast all day long but also has an extensive lunch menu that includes hamburgers, deli sandwiches and meatloaf. The restaurant focuses on using fresh ingredients and preparing food to order rather than using processed or frozen ingredients.
I ordered the Greek gyro ($5.50) and a side of fries ($1.95). The gyro was stuffed with meat, crisp lettuce and tomatoes. The meat was flavorful and Tommy's "special sauce" enhanced it nicely.
I also got to sample the bean soup and cinnamon-swirl French toast, which were both tasty.
Our waitress waffled between businesslike (to the point of being abrupt) and cheerfully helpful. I wanted to add feta cheese to my sandwich, but forgot when she quickly turned her attention to the kids. My youngest son also was debating about adding a side to his order and she walked away before he could decide.
The restaurant doesn't have a kids' menu, nor does it offer crayons or placemats to amuse children. But the boys were entertained by the photos on the wall. They recognized Elvis, The Beatles and a few others.
The roomy women's bathroom had a changing station and was neat and clean.
After the meal, which included lots of large portions, we were too stuffed to sample any dessert. The restaurant has varied selection of sweets, including homemade rice pudding, pie and ice cream that I'd like to go back and try.
Tommy's Diner is definitely a good option for families looking for a quality meal in a fun setting.
-Melissa Kossler Dutton
THE KID SAYS
My mom said we had visited Tommy's Diner a long time ago but I didn't remember it.
When I got there I felt like eating soup. The waitress said the soup of the day was bean soup, which isn't one of my favorites.
I ordered the open-faced turkey sandwich with mashed potatoes ($6.25) and a side of dressing ($2.25). While I was waiting for my food to come, my dad's bowl of bean soup ($3.15) arrived. Since it was the only food on the table, I asked if I could try it. After taking one taste, I quickly took several more bites. It was good.
I heard my dad say, "I guess I'm not getting that back anytime soon."
A few minutes later, everyone else's food arrived. My dish looked tasty. I tried a bite of the mashed potatoes and they were delicious - as good as the ones my dad makes. Then I tried the turkey, and it was even better than the mashed potatoes. I was surprised that the gravy was such a light color but it tasted like normal gravy. The dressing, which our family calls stuffing, was just OK.
My brother ordered cinnamon-swirl French toast ($5.75). When it arrived, it was covered with melting butter and powdered sugar. I don't really like French toast but this was pretty good. I think the cinnamon helped the taste.
The waitress was nice and I really liked the atmosphere. It was warm and comfortable and quiet. They had interesting stuff on the walls and cool decorations. It was fun to look at the photos of Ohio State Buckeye players and famous people like The Three Stooges. I liked the old gas pump by the bathroom.
The men's bathroom did not have changing station. Other than that, it was just fine. It was a one-person bathroom.