Though boasting “the World’s Most Copied Menu,” Original Pancake House certainly has no problem drawing in CU’s breakfast-seeking crowds every weekend. Yet how does a chain restaurant, normally the scorn of foodies and critics, win such high praise?
The key, explains owner Eric Faulkner, is an exceptional focus on quality food and attentive service. That means little touches like fresh squeezed orange juice and dedicated coffee servers, key cogs in the machine that leaves customers wanting for nothing other than a second helping. Regulars are met with excited greetings and hearty smiles, and locals run into each other with such a frequency that you know they’ve been eating there for years. Even at the height of a jam-packed Saturday or Sunday breakfast service, parties rarely need to wait more than twenty minutes to be seated and can expect their orders to be taken promptly and monitored with loving care.
Just because things run smoothly doesn’t mean the kitchen is serving up “Plain Jane” pancakes and omelettes—Original Pancake House’s menu is widely copied for a reason. Omelettes filled with fresh veggies and juicy breakfast meats, homemade corned beef hash with glistening eggs and a selection of cereals make up the savory side of things. For those looking to break out the syrupy goodness, you’ll find pancakes and waffles filled with everything from fresh fruit and nuts to—wait for it—bacon. And then there are the truly decadent options: oven baked Dutch Babies and Apple Pancakes that, while they require a longer wait, are about as close to eating dessert for breakfast as you can accomplish in a restaurant. This whole wide array of flavors and variations streams perpetually from a busy but well-oiled kitchen that never seems to stop until the doors close at half past two in the afternoon. It may not be the 24/7 breakfast some of us crave, but it’s on a whole other planet when it comes to taste. It might be a bit of a trek from Campustown all the way to Original Pancake House, but such a wide array of breakfast foods and such friendly service are as good a reason to get up early in the morning as any other!