After watching countless Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives after midnight and having cravings of those greasy dishes, I’ve finally made my way to one of the featured diners. I’ve heard people raving about The Red Wagon, but it’s not exactly located in an area I would often go by. To be exact, I didn’t even know where it was. Located in the East side, this is definitely an area I never visit. It wasn’t too bad to get there though. A Canada Line skytrain to Waterfront, and then a short bus ride takes you one block away from this diner. As you can see, people were lining up, and it was around 1pm on a weekday.
But then J and I just walked in, since we weren’t sure if we should leave our name first, and the waitress told us to grab a seat right away. I guess the group outside was quite large and needed to wait for a large table. So if you’re looking for a table for two, it’s definitely easy! Literally no wait at all! So awesome, since we had imagined ourselves lining up.
This picture reminds me of the scene I saw on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives! But yea, as you can tell, the place is quite small. The kitchen area is extremely small as well.
Iced Lemonade, Iced Coffee
On a hot, sunny day, we needed some refreshers. I chose the Iced Lemonade, even though I was afraid it would be too tart. Surprisingly, it was quite sweet! They must’ve put some sweetener in or something. The colour was also extremely yellow…almost golden yellow. Not exactly the colour of lemonade I see when it’s freshly squeezed. But hey, it tasted great! J said his Iced Coffee was quite strong, but good. They also gave him an agave sweetener syrup, since he told us that sugar wouldn’t melt nicely in the iced drink. How thoughtful!
Crispy Pork Belly Sandwich – pickled veg, jalapeno, cilantro, mayo, baguette, chips
Onto our food! OMG. This was like delicious. We sort of chose the Crispy Pork Belly Sandwich, since the daily special was sold out, but am I glad I decided to try it out. It comes with a side of chips, which I believe are freshly baked, and extremely crispy. They are also ever so lightly seasoned with salt and are absolutely delicious. I wish they sold these to go. For $12, it’s a decent price for the amount of food you get, because you will actually get full by the end. I mean, you pay that price for a burger at many Western restaurant chains, but this is way better.
Onto the sandwich itself. I was not expecting so much pork belly in it, but it was filled with it! They were quite large pieces, but the pork belly was so soft, that it wasn’t a mess to eat. Other than the grease that was just pouring out. Yup, by the time I finished devouring this sandwich, my plate was filled with oil and grease. The pork belly had a good balance between the amount of fat and meat. This is definitely not something you should be eating everyday, but this is worth having a cheat day. I’m not a big fan of cilantro or even veggies in my sandwich, but for some reason, all these ingredients just added so much flavour and worked so well. I didn’t even pick out any cilantro, like I would usually. The baguette was also soft to bite on the inside, and crispy on the outside. I have to say, I enjoyed this sandwich more than the one at meat and bread, even though the two aren’t exactly the same.
Pulled Pork Pancakes – 3 buttermilk pancakes layered with pulled pork, JD-spiked maple syrup
And of course, we had to get their infamous Pulled Pork Pancakes. Pancakes aren’t my usual go-to item for breakfast, but these ones were amazing. The buttermilk pancakes were extremely fluffy. One thing I usually hate about pancakes are how dense they are made, and it makes you feel like you are eating a bunch of cake. This one was exactly the opposite. Fluffy and light. And who knew pulled pork would go with pancakes? I sort of questioned that at first, but once you try it, it will change your mind completely.
There is so much pulled pork in between each layer of pancake, and the flavouring is perfect. They also have their signature Jack Daniel’s syrup. I actually didn’t really taste any alcohol, but the flavour was definitely a bit different from normal maple syrup. This is a must try and well worth your $13!
By the end of the meal, we were completely full. We both shared each of the plates, and we couldn’t end up finishing all the pancakes. It’s a good idea to also take a walk after…since you will feel very guilty for eating all that oily food. I wouldn’t suggest coming here every week for breakfast, but it is definitely a must try! Oh, and when your bill comes, you get some coca cola gummies. I don’t know why, but it gives me a retro feel to it. Service was also quite pleasant. Our food did take quite a while to arrive though. At least 20 minutes. Other than that, I was extremely pleased with my food at The Red Wagon! PS. You could say this is heart attack food…so beware 🙂