5109 Memphis Ave
Brooklyn, Ohio 44144
I was introduced to the Expressway Diner by an Internet friend on the first night we hung out in real life. Carla and I, discovering a mutual vegetarianism and disenchantment with humanity, decided to meet up at the local bar Manja, then visit a few bars downtown. After a few drinks, Carla said she was having a hankering for home cookin’, so we went to the Expressway Diner. She had the jojos, which seemed quite delicious, and I had a ultra-tasty vegetable quesedilla complete with salsa and sour cream, which was large enough to provide for ample leftovers.
I was impressed enough to visit again with my roommate Jeff at the next available opportunity. We both had the omelet, homefries, and toast breakfast, and were stunned by the large, fluffy, delicious omelets. I argue that the homefries at Expressway are the best that I have ever had and represent the platonic ideal of homefries — salty and flavorful, not greasy, or soggy, or burnt — but Jeff seems to prefer the homefries at the Clifton Diner. I was also impressed by a menu item with a name something along the lines of “Belgian Waffle Deluxe” — Expressway has a giant menu of breakfast, lunch, and dinner entrees — which was a waffle covered with strawberries, whipped cream, and the piece de resistance — a big scoop of vanilla ice cream in the middle! On my next visit, I had the non-ice-cream topped version of this waffle, which was nicely crispy and light, with not-too-sweet strawberries and just enough whipped cream to give you a taste but not so much that you can feel your arteries clog.
Another benefit of the Expressway Diner is that they maintained a smoking section long after the Ohio smoking ban had gone into effect. Maybe that will disgust some people, but as a smoker, I appreciated it. I’m fairly sure now that there’s actually a penalty for violating the smoking ban, they’ve gone no-smoking.
The last time I ate at the Expressway was the Saturday on which the old Fulton Road bridge by the Cleveland Zoo was supposed to blow up. After my boyfriend, Jeff and I sat in the rain for around an hour to see a charge go off but not actually destroy anything, we decided that we were too wet and miserable to wait around for anything else to happen or not happen, which considering the bridge wasn’t fully razed until the next Tuesday was a good decision. Since the Expressway Diner is near the corner of Memphis and Fulton, we headed over there for a late breakfast. Jeff had another omelette, I’m fairly sure my boyfriend had regular French toast, and I decided to try the almond French Toast, which was essentially French toast with slivered almonds on it. Again, it was delicious, just like everything else I’ve had at the Expressway Diner.
Other benefits of this place are the chrome trim on the building, the fact that it’s open 24 hours, and has extremely reasonable prices (I think my French toast, without meat, was under $4.) The staff is also reliable and friendly, and they seem amenable to special orders along the lines of “no meat.” I hope to someday go back and try some of their lunch/dinner fare. I’d say that I’d post an updated review at that point, but it’ll probably be just as good as everything else I’ve had there, so why bother?
[A note from my next visit: the quesedilla "tortilla" is actually fillo dough!]