John’s Place Restaurant
723 Pandora Ave
The food and the staff are the foundation of the experience at John’s Place. Comfort food is served in large, flavorful portions. This is a classic diner where old food standards have been taken to a new creative level. The portions are large and the prices were very reasonable compared to other places we visited in Victoria and Vancouver. Visitors are greeted with warm hospitality as well as a kind, fun spirit that is genuine and not a contrivance that one often finds in tourist towns.
The restaurant is fairly large with high walls covered in framed pictures and posters. Many of the images relate to Detroit baseball and hockey. One can see a 60’s theme in the selection of posters. The pictures will give your party a lot to discuss while your food is being prepared. This is not fast food, if you want to get in and out in 20 minutes or less, just order dessert. The work staff are constantly moving, but you will not be rushed out. Allocate at least 90 minutes to enjoy the ambiance and your meal. If the place is packed, as it was when we were there on a Thursday morning, breakfast may take a while. This is not a bad thing as you will get plenty of good conversation with any staff that zoom by. I would recommend calling ahead for a reservation, especially at breakfast time.
On our first visit, I had the “Bat Out of Hell’ Meatloaf and Eggs“. The gravy on the pan seared meatloaf was tasty and loaded with mushrooms.
My 14 y/o daughter had some difficulty ordering the “Erotic French Toast“, but after several therapy sessions I should be fine with it. The presentation of these two large slices of French bread stuffed with hazelnut Nutella spread and sliced fresh bananas was amazing. John’s has its own special cream cheese syrup that should be applied liberally unless your physician has told you to cut your cholesterol from your diet. In that case only try a little.
Laura had “the 222 Headache” which includes choice of two pancakes or a Belgian waffle with 2 eggs any style and choice of two slices of grilled bacon or two link sausages or a chorizo or Italian chicken sausage patty or grilled Virginian ham. It tastes as good as it looks. She wasn’t able to finish her breakfast, but she left the restaurant quite content.
If you eat a late breakfast, you might see the bread start to appear on tables after 11am. Ask for some. It’s made fresh on-site with some unique ingredients and should be sampled. If you like it, they will sell it in loaves. The muffins are also quite tasty and
can should be purchased.
If one is going to visit John’s Place, leave room for dessert. On our second visit, I had the very amazing Mile High Apple Pie (pictured above) which looked huge, but was light and not nearly as heavy as one might expect it to be. The menu describes the pie as having many layers of apples tossed with sour cream, brown sugar, cinnamon and baked with a crunchy granola nut topping. I can tell you that after eating an entire piece of the pie, the expected sugar high never materialized.
Princess Tours stops in Victoria for a few hours during their Alaska cruise. Even if your shipboard food is fantastic and prepaid, I would recommend allocating a bit of time to visit John’s Place. It is an experience.
If you have eaten at John’s Place, please feel free to add your comments below.
Click here for additional reviews and comments