The Little Diner in Vail, Colorado is the Best Little Diner in town, and seriously serves the very best breakfast in town.
I stopped into The Little Diner in Vail, Colorado on a recent trip and liked it so much I came back the next day to have it again.
In 2008, taking over a restaurant already four decades old, chef Brian Little is serving up the best little and big breakfasts in Vail. From the beautiful berries and pancakes to the best breakfast burrito to the pannekoeken, a dreamy dish from my childhood. Definitely get the pannekoeken.
I really liked sitting down at the end of the counter, where I can see the guys riding the range. They’re fast as lightning.
If you’re headed up the mountain, this burrito (it’s as big as your head) will treat you right. Stuffed with eggs, crispy hash browns, green chiles, tomatoes, onions, cheese and smothered and covered in homemade salsa, you might have to have them wrap up half for a mid-morning snack at the top. I had this before tackling a hike up to the top of the mountain, and it lasted all through the 14,000 foot peaks I was hitting.
All right, we have to talk Pannekoeken. It’s something like a fluffy crepe, where beautifully crispy edges crawl up and out of the pan. Here’s a shot of them making it, running that soft batter right up the side of the pan.
When it’s done, it has a soft, eggy center perfect for maple syrup (in my family, we made them with chopped apples and soaked raisins and cinnamon), and there’s lots of butter that drizzles and oozes all over as you eat it. They double dust it in powdered sugar and serve it with lemon wedges that you can squeeze over it and brighten it. That lemon really lifts the sugar and eggs.
I cut it like a pizza, and dip the soft wedges into the pool of butter and powdered sugar the falls under it as you cut it. Honestly, this might be the most perfect breakfast in Vail.
But there’s pancakes, too. Soft, fluffy pancakes. I’m pretty sure these were chocolate chip pancakes, but they weren’t on the menu. I’d ask for them.
You can also get your pancakes topped with fresh raspberries.
Little Diner is a family place. Folks gathered and talked and laughed and ate and shared just a little bit of time in their life with each other. I came back a couple days just to hang out in that atmosphere. It felt like home away from home.
Here’s Chef Brian Little:
Another shot of the line guys:
Burritos for days….