what happened to the naked guy? But more on him later.
It was the weekend of the Dannenberg reunion and we made plans to breakfast with Chuck’s cousin Raina and her husband Jesse. And what better place to go than up the road a piece to Pacific Beach and that temple of Southern California beach vibe—Kono’s Surf Club?
“Overlooking the ocean at Pacific Beach in San Diego, Kono's Cafe offers an extremely casual and tasty breakfast or lunch. Customers order at a counter and then sit down outside for the gorgeous view or inside to catch the morning football games. The pancake syrup is not maple, the plates are styrofoam, and the chairs are of the plastic lawn furniture persuasion, but the burritos are stuffed with fluffy eggs and the potatoes covered in plenty of cheese and scallions. Everything is so enormous that you should consider sharing...or asking for some foil to wrap up your delicacies to enjoy later” (perficiouseats.blogspot.com).
Michael Stern at roadfood.com further elaborates: “Kono’s Surf Club is at Crystal Pier on the Pacific Ocean. It is a supremely casual place with some indoor tables, but when the weather is nice (which it usually is), many customers dine under umbrellas at tables on the patio, where the clean air is filled with the sound of surf. It is also possible to carry your paper plate along the boardwalk and enjoy your bacon and eggs in direct sight of incoming waves and the surfers who ride them.” What Michael neglected to mention is that the dining patio is across the walkway in back of the bike shop (I think it is a bike shop) and overlooking the ocean.
Things were hopping at 9:30 that morning and Chuck had to drop us off as he searched to a space to park The Big White Truck. So Raina, Jesse, and I stood in line, which extended into the street (photo above).
“When tourist season is in full swing, the line for Kono's Surf Club Cafe can be 30 people deep for breakfast…Since its opening in 1991, Kono's has only seen four raises in price, the last one occurring back in 2007” (www.citysbest.com).
Chuck arrived in time and we inched our way inside the crowded dining room and toward the order counter. The menu isn’t long and includes: the Breakfast Sandwich—eggs, bacon, cheese, tomato, mayo on toasted English muffin; Egg Burrito #1—eggs, sausage, avocado, cheese, and pica sauce in flour tortilla; Egg Burrito #2—eggs, green chili, cheese, pica sauce in flour tortilla; Egg Burrito #3—eggs, bacon, cheese, potatoes, and pica sauce in flour tortilla; Egg Burrito #4—eggs, ham, green pepper, onion, cheese, pica sauce in flour tortilla; the Egg Scramble—eggs, bacon, onion, green pepper, cheese with English muffin and kono potatoes; Pancakes, Bacon, and Scrambled Eggs; Just Pancakes; French Toast and Bacon; Big Breakfast #1—eggs, bacon, English muffins, potatoes, and pancakes; Big Breakfast #2—eggs, bacon, English muffins, potatoes, and French toast; and Little Breakfast—two eggs, kono potatoes, and wheat toast.
Our orders placed, we immediately sought a table on the oceanfront. Since the day was cloudy and rather cool—not the best for eating hot food outside—we found the patio rather empty. But it is not the true Kono’s experience unless you are sitting by the ocean.
Somehow, with three distinct dining areas, your food manages to find you. For Jesse it was Big Breakfast #1 (that’s the one with the pancakes).
Raina chose the day’s breakfast special—the Breakfast Sandwich with a cup of fruit.
For Chuck, it would be the Egg Scramble.
And for me—after much deliberation between the four burrito options—chose Egg Burrito #3 with the green chilies.
Now the truth is, Kono’s food—despite the on-line rave reviews—is just about average, although the portions are indeed huge and earns 3.0 Addies. But, oh, the 5.0 Addie view.
Getting back to the naked guy. He wasn’t in evidence that day. But as described by Tammy Waite on urbanspoon.com: “…there is a crazy dude who roller blades around the beach boardwalk naked every weekend save for some themed costume—like on Kentucky Derby Saturday he had a horse tail glued to his butt and a furry pouch covering…. And on St. Patrick's Day, he had shamrocks on his cheeks and a leprechaun on his.... You can't beat the ambiance of the beach and the naked freak.”