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Welcome Diner hasn’t experienced trouble filling seats for dinner and late-night service, but in the morning the place is completely empty.
It’s not because of poor food or service – they just weren’t open before 5 p.m. However, the name has triggered a consistent reaction of, “They’re a diner? Why don’t they offer breakfast?”
Thankfully, Welcome Diner has recognized the demand and have set a date to open doors earlier. Having recently launched a test-run, weekend-only brunch, beginning December 12, they’ll open every day of the week at 9 a.m.
Breakfast and brunch items will be available from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., while select salads, sandwiches, and burgers will be available after 11 a.m.
The expansion isn’t forced whatsoever. The southern comfort food naturally translates well to breakfast foods.
Breakfast and brunch includes the usual fare such as Biscuits and Gravy ($7) and the Simply Classic Omelette ($8). Much like Welcome Diner’s dinner menu, seemingly simple items aren’t as simple as they appear.
Canadian bacon isn’t missed with the Eggs Benedict ($12). The pork belly from the E&R Pork whole pig butchered in-house is both crispy and melt-in-your-mouth tender thanks to the braised-and-fried process. The hollandaise doesn’t overwhelm the already fatty pork with richness, as the extra lemon in it provides the needed acidity for balance.
The Grilled Toast ($7) is actually a Mexican twist on avocado toast, featuring guacamole, pico de gallo, cotija cheese, and a sunny-side up egg.
Mexican influences manage to find other ways seamlessly into the menu.
The Pork Posole Rojo ($12), normally available during dinner, appears on the morning menu to help cure a hangover or whatever ails you.
While birria isn’t hard to find in Tucson, it’s not always made with the traditional goat meat. Welcome Diner’s Birria y Tamal ($12) features stewed goat, pickled onion, cabbage, and a poached egg.
Welcome Diner’s giving some love to the brunch cocktail menu as well, of course.
The Cajun Mary ($8) features a house blend of tomatoes, trinity (onions, bell peppers, and celery) and Cajun spices with some pickled veggies and a rim of charred corn husk salt.
Michelada lovers will enjoy the Bloody Beer ($8), which features the house mix with Tecate Light.
Most of the other cocktails will be available until Welcome Diner closes at 2 a.m.
“We’re still a place you can come into late at night for a craft cocktail,” said Connor Mansager, beverage manager at Welcome Diner.
Even though the expansion into morning hours is just starting, guests can look forward to continuous changes.
“We’ll keep on finding new products,” said Michael Babcock, founding chef and partner with Welcome Hospitality. “Seasons change.”
For more information, visit welcomediner.net