Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Penny's Family Restaurant-- All Day Long, You'll Have Good Luck

You don't really expect to find a ol' fashioned American comfort food eating establishment in something called "Hong Kong Shopping Center," but that's exactly what you'll find in lovely West Covina (not to be confused with its rival, directionless Covina).

Penny's is a sweet little place surrounded by knock off 99cent stores, fast food Chinese restaurants, and video stores with signs in languages I cannot comprehend. On the Sunday morning that we went, Penny's was packed with what were clearly regulars. That, or the waitresses were Chatty Cathys with everyone. An elderly gentleman dressed like a cowboy with a penny stuck to his name tag and a belt-buckle made of nickels, coasted around the place filling up coffees. When we asked him a question regarding the food, he shrugged and said "Oh, sorry. I just pour the coffee."

For all that activity buzzing around the place, you'd think someone would have noticed that we were in the beginning of February and they still had fall and Christmas decorations up. Maybe they just didn't care, like your great aunt who leaves up the Christmas tree all year because "Eh, I like it like that way" and "Oh, the bother."

While watching television the night before, I turned to #1DC Antoinette and said "Man, I want some pancakes!" So guess what I ordered? No swerve, I ordered the pancake breakfast with sausage, found on the menu as the "3 by 3 Special."

I'm going to confess that I like things doughy. I eat raw dough. Not just cookie dough, but rather all dough--and I like my pancakes doughy. Penny's delivered moist and soft pancakes to my belly. They also delivered a ton of butter, although I managed to scrape those two mounds off the moment after I took the picture. I'm sure my arteries look like the river of slime in Ghost Busters 2. I would have loved something more exotic, but alas they only had the standard maple pancake syrup.

The sausage was unremarkable.

Antoinette managed to find something she has long desired: perfect eggs. I was skeptical at first when she made the pronouncement, but I tried a bite and they were, without a doubt, perfect eggs: not rubbery, not wet, tons of real egg flavor. They were THE perfect eggs.
The ham steak was flavorful, but needed a few extra minutes on the skillet to make it rival the perfection of the eggs. I found the home fries a little too greasy and Antoinette would have preferred more crispness.

Instead of toast, she got the side of biscuits and gravy. The gravy tasted homemade with dashes of pepper while the biscuit was straight out of a package with dashes of disappointment.

Penny's did break the streak of family restaurants with crane machines, which could have been a disappointment, but hey had something arguably better: The Marvel Super Heroes fighting game from the late 90s. Juggernaut kicked my butt. Extra bonus--only a quarter!

We enjoyed Penny's. For Antoinette, the perfect eggs kept it from being just okay. I loved my pancakes and an ol' cowboy pouring coffee just sold me completely.

Food: Good
Service: Friendly
Price: Between $6 and $8
Pie: No pie.

969 S Glendora Ave
West Covina, CA 91790
(626) 338-9286

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