Three Angels Diner
2617 Broad Avenue
Every Wednesday, my mom comes over and we take the monkeys (Satchel, 8, and Jiro, 6) to Taekwondo practice. When practice is over, we take turns picking a restaurant for dinner. This week was technically Jiro's week to choose, but because my mom just had her birthday we let her choose. Her choice was for me to pick some place new. I'd been looking for an excuse to take the monkeys to the newly opened Three Angels Diner by our house, and now I had one.
Three Angels is owned by the Severs, who also own Bari, and who have three monkeys (aka angels) of their own. Even though the restaurant has a full bar and is in the hip, Broad Avenue arts district, it is very welcoming to families. I went for lunch the day they opened, and Warren and I went for dinner one night when the monkeys were at a sleepover. Both times I was impressed.
My plan was to let the monkeys play pinball while we waited for our delicious dinner. As soon as we walked in, they made a beeline for the machines. Sadly, they both had an "Out of Order" sticker on them (as you may or may not be able to see in my crappy picture).
They actually took the news pretty well, probably because it was delivered by David Parks, famed midtown bartender and server. He is also a father and knows how to keep monkeys laughing. (i.e. The first thing he asked Satchel was why he was in his pajamas.)
Within minutes of sitting down, the monkeys had befriended David and were placing their orders. They wanted hamburgers with "meat, cheese, ketchup, pickles, and bread." David tried to trick them into asking for mustard or onions but they couldn't be fooled. He mentioned that they had potato and squash soup, and after I assured them that Daddy put squash in the potato soup at home, they agreed to have some of that too. "I want cheese and bacon on mine," Jiro said. "Me too," said Satchel. I reminded them that we weren't at Huey's, but David assured us that cheese and bacon was no trouble and in fact, it was a great idea.
Jiro and "Bruce Lee" chowed down while my mom and I pored over the menu. We were both indecisive as everything sounded good. David read us a long list of daily veggies and we were both tempted to just get veggie plates, but in the end she ordered the organic beef short ribs and I went with the Momma's Veggie sandwich and brussel sprouts. (Yes, I was trying to make a healthy choice.)
The monkeys literally licked their bowls clean. (I begged them to stop.) And then, declared the soup as good as Huey's. That's a pretty big compliment!
Once the soup bowls were cleared, we had a brief discussion about how they know Santa isn't real because there's no way he could get down our chimney and that I should just stop telling them that he's watching. "We know you use your money to buy us presents," Jiro said. Now that they are both in the elementary class, I see no reason to keep up the ruse. "Fine," I said. "Then you can rest assured that I am watching your every move and making MY list of who's naughty and nice."
That shut them up! Haha.
When our entrees came out I was immediately sad that I did not order a burger.
It looked and smelled a lot better than this picture lets on. (The "mood lighting" in the diner made snapping good pics near impossible. If you want to take pictures of your food, go in the daytime!)
Jiro and "Jackie Chan" wasted no time digging in, and I feared I wouldn't even get a bite! Thankfully, Jiro hooked me up. Nothing against the Momma Veggie sandwich (house baked tofu, red bell pepper, lettuce, red onion, pickle, house made mayo, veggie bacon, and oil & vinegar), but the beef has WAY more flavor.
Here's a sad picture of the Momma Veggie:
You can't see the tofu, but if it was baked it was just barely. It had a very soft consistency. I think the fake bacon and the red pepper saved the sandwich from complete blah-ness. It's pictured here with homemade chips (yum!) and the standard Three Angels deviled egg. When I reminded David of my brussel sprouts he quickly told the kitchen. They were fantastic. Next time I am definitely getting a veggie plate.
I wondered what my mom would think about the short ribs since Jennifer Biggs, in her CA review, made a point of saying they were actually brisket. (Turns out that was just a snafu.) However, my mom said that they reminded her of what she grew up calling "soup meat." I was surprised to see the grits look more like polenta, but the green beans looked tasty.
Another horrible picture:
My mom saved me the last bite of everything and my only comment was, "Huh, kind of bland." She'd eaten the whole thing without complaining, but noted that growing up she would have had the meat served with horseradish sauce to spice it up.
Overall, I'd say we had two very happy monkeys and two satisfied adults. We all had room for dessert, so we kept going. Jiro got the banana cream pie, Satchel got the cookies, my mom got the lemon ice box pie, and I got two spoons.
I was tasked with selecting the best dessert, and while they all three tasted great, the banana pudding was the clear winner in my mind. And, much to my delight, Jiro could only eat about half of it.
When all was said and done we had half a hamburger, some chips, 3 deviled eggs, some brussel sprouts, and one chocolate chip cookie to take home to Warren. David packed the leftovers up in two eco-friendly containers much to my satisfaction. (Three Angels and Bari are not Project Green Fork certified, but I understand they do several PGF-type things on their own.)
Satchel successfully covered himself in chocolate and Jiro needed to use the restroom, so I escorted them to the Men's room. (The restrooms are the back storeroom and you can get a sneak peek in the kitchen when you visit.) I glanced in the Men's room briefly and didn't notice a changing table. I'm pretty sure there wasn't one in the Women's on my last visit, but I didn't think to re-check.
My mom picked up the tab, but I made her tell me what it was so that I could report it here: $48 plus tip. Not bad considering the monkeys had soup (I'm pretty sure David had them split a bowl) and we ordered three desserts.
And I couldn't leave without having my picture taken on one of the awesome orange sofas in the front under the even awesome-r Bobby Spillman painting.
I think you can *almost* tell that Three Angels is lovely and bright and colorful in this shot.
David walked out with us and made sure we got to our car ok, which was very nice of him.
We'll be back.