Dinette in Echo Park has been one of my favorite casual brunch/lunch spots for roughly the past year. When it first opened, the now-local hot spot was nothing but one tiny order window and a couple of steel stools, easily missed. Today there are still only a few casual outside tables and seats, and that order window is still the only way to access any semblance of restaurant experience, yet the spot has become a huge favorite among many people living in the Los Angeles area. The overwhelmingly laid-back exterior is complemented by fresh, delicious seasonal menu items. My favorite? The waffles.
I usually have a very strict philosophy about the ranking of breakfast foods. My top three favorite brunch entrees, in order, are french toast, waffles, and pancakes. If I ever go to a restaurant and spot french toast on the menu, it's a done deal. Especially if said french toast is made with brioche or some other very thick-cut bread. Dinette doesn't offer a french toast option, but with waffles this good, they really don't need to.
I kid you not, this is the perfect waffle — moist on the inside, crispy on the outside, and the most beautiful shade of golden brown you've ever seen. I usually opt for the seasonal fruit waffle option. It comes with berries and whipped cream, both of which are extremely fresh and not overwhelmingly sweet, which is perfectly balanced by the slightly caramelized exterior of the waffle.
I'm also a huge fan of smoked salmon. A slice of artisanal bread, toasted and topped with a layer of cream cheese and slices of briny, buttery salmon, pulled together with the fresh kick of chives or onion? Delicious. Plus, salmon is really good for you, so you can really never go wrong with this combo. Dinette's rendition of this classic puts a twist on the traditional lox on toast with the addition of fried garlic pieces.
Whether you're digging into a piece of avocado toast or lox toast, a berry waffle or poached egg & bacon waffle, or even one of their baked-fresh-daily pastries, Dinette really has something for everyone, and at a fairly reasonable price, too. If you live in the area, make sure to check it out! Fair warning: you will get hooked on those waffles. It's inevitable.