For several months now, our Westside members of DWOW have been clamoring for us to visit Sunnyside Grill in Cleves. Unfortunately, they’re closed Monday nights, our typical night out. Fortunately, we were able to grab breakfast there last Saturday before we all scurried home for the holidays.
I knew it from the moment I pulled in the parking lot: this is a DWOW kind of place. The lot was full of pickup trucks and the Merry Christmas banner on the side of the building really drove home the fact this wasn’t some fruit bowl and granola type of breakfast joint.
The inside of Sunnyside is exactly as I hoped it would be with old mismatched tables and booths, but there was also a nice touch on the walls: auto racing pictures. At home in Indiana, I half expect to see multiple racing pictures on the walls of several establishments thanks to our state’s long-running racing history. Cincinnati restaurants, however, typically don’t have this type of stuff on the wall. With pictures of everything from drag racing to sprint cars to late models, I could tell that someone in charge of this place loves auto racing. Given its proximity to one of the only drag strips in town, I am willing to bet more than one good ol’ boy eating breakfast that morning had a little gasoline in his veins.
With a solid décor of car pictures and used furniture, I had a feeling the food would be a real treat. I ordered a pretty standard breakfast: eggs, toast, potatoes, and goetta. Apparently, I missed something monumental on the menu… Bryan and Nate each ordered a “Smelvin” which is basically every breakfast item thrown together. Liken it to a breakfast version of a Skyline 5-way or for the Arrested Development fans out there imagine a Skip’s Scramble. Nate ordered a large, which could easily feed a small family for at least three days. To my amazement, he complained it was the same size as Bryan’s regular, but just on a bigger plate. Nate, you’re wrong on this one. I think your large Smelvin weighted as much as an average kindergartener.
Although not a Smelvin, my food was good and there was plenty of it. I couldn’t even finish all my good potatoes, and my goetta was cooked a little differently than I’m used to… a little softer on the inside, but it was all good rib-sticking food. And for those of you wondering, Bryan and Nate both failed to finish their giant piles of food and took plenty home with them. I assume they are still eating it.
Sunnyside Grill reminds me of the kind of little place you’d find on the side of a highway late at night. You know, the kind of place where your coffee cup never goes empty, and you feel slightly ashamed for the amount of food you just ate. We didn’t see many women dining, and both our Westside friends claim their wives won’t set foot in the place- this is a Dives without Wives place for sure. I can’t wait to go back.
(And before the diehard Westsiders get all bent out of shape I should disclose that Sunnyside Grill is technically in Colerain Township, a near cousin to the “true” Westside but not actually the Westside.)