Food & Drink: Old favorites still excel at classic breakfasts

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If you go

DuckTales, 612 N. Devine Road, Vancouver. Hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays; 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays; 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Fridays; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturdays. 360-735-7932 or www.ducktaleskitchen.com

Christine’s Restaurant, 2626 E. Evergreen Blvd., Vancouver. Hours: 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. 360-694-1750 or www.facebook.com/ChristinesRestaurant

Rachel Pinsky

If you are looking for classic American breakfast, made to order, in a comfortable setting with friendly service these are a couple of good places to try.

• Ducktales: DuckTales is located at MacArthur Boulevard and Devine Road. The Waddle family has a long tradition of feeding people in this area. Many Vancouver natives remember Waddle’s Drive-In and Coffee Shop at Jantzen Beach, Ore., which opened in 1945. Following in the family tradition, Gene’s grandson, Steve, and his wife, Jane, opened Ducktales in 2009.

On a recent visit, the room was filled with regulars who had a friendly camaraderie with the servers. There was also a couple of enthusiastic out-of-towners in the booth in front of me. One of the women in the booth said she was going to give DuckTales a 10 on Yelp because “this place is awesome.”

The breakfast menu features hearty fare. My daughter got a short stack of pancakes that comes with a choice of sausage and/or bacon. She chose one of each. I got the DuckTales scramble. The scramble came with a choice of toast and I chose the English muffin.

My daughter’s short stack was huge. The pancakes were rich and griddled to just-doneness. The bacon and sausage were good quality meats. The DuckTales scramble was a generous serving of ribbons of potato, clusters of ground chuck, spinach and onion mixed into fluffy scrambled eggs, and covered with a blanket of melted cheddar and parmesan cheeses served with sides of salsa and sour cream. The English muffin was generously buttered, chewy, and filled with nooks and crannies.

• Christine’s Restaurant: Christine Summers opened Christine’s on Evergreen Boulevard near Grand Boulevard in 1987 and was sold to the current owner, Glenda McCarthy, in 1999, serving classic breakfast from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. seven days a week since day one. Walking into Christine’s feels like visiting someone’s grandma’s house in the country. When I entered, I was greeted like an old friend. The room was filled with regulars drawn in by hearty breakfast fare and friendly service. I visited Christine’s one morning with my son. He got the large pancake. I got the Spanish omelet.

The large pancake was large. The waiter and I doubted he would finish it. He surprised us and ate the whole thing in a few minutes and then declared it was the best pancake he had ever had. I managed to steal a few bites before he demolished it. The pancake was rich and buttermilky and satisfying. The Spanish omelet had mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes and onions with a side of salsa. It is served with hash browns and a choice of toast (I had an English muffin). The omelet was hearty and satisfying.

My experiences at DuckTales and Christine’s made my realize that my job is to report the new and exciting, but it is important not to forget the old and reliable. Vancouver is fortunate to have a lot of classic American neighborhood places and if we neglect them we will lose little bits of what makes this town special.

Rachel Pinsky can be emailed at couveeats@gmail.com. You can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram @couveeats.

Editor’s note: This story was corrected to reflect that Christine’s was started by Christine Summers and then sold later to its current owner, Glenda McCarthy.