America's best breakfast is in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Visit Franks Diner for a big experience in a small space
It’s a tiny diner with an oversized personality and palate.
Sassy waitresses tease customers and pass out complimentary shots of liquor. An employee emerges from the kitchen to act as a ringmaster, letting everyone in the restaurant know his opinions. It’s as if you’ve stepped into the role of an extra on the set of a sitcom during filming.
And the food? Absolutely magnificent.
To me, this is the Best Breakfast in America. And it’s only one state away if you want to travel from Iowa — in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Franks Diner in Kenosha, Wisconsin is narrow, charming and one of the best breakfast restaurants in the USA. (Photo by John Naughton.)
This space is the size of a small apartment and has been in operation for nearly a century.
But let’s get to the food… and the show.
My Life, in Color is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.
If you know me or read my column as part of the Iowa Writers Collaborative, you know that I love to make food part of my travel experiences. You’ll find Franks (not Frank’s) offering the heartiest of breakfasts.
There are omelettes loaded with meat and veggies. Giant pancakes, including ones shaped like Mickey Mouse. Biscuits and gravy and loaded hash browns. Thick sliced bread baked just for the restaurant. And for those who want to want to live on the edge of the spatula, Garbage Plates, a combination of eggs, hash browns and meats that can include Spam, chorizo and traditional breakfast meats.
Walk in, waddle out.
Among the stars of the show: (from left), crispy American fries, thick multigrain bread loaded with butter, and house-made corned beef hash. (Photo by John Naughton.)
The menu gives diners a tremendous amount of options — but eating light here can be a challenge.
Do you want your garbage plate loaded with three meats? All the veggies? Eggs sided with potatoes and hash? Why not.
You can get lunch here, too, but I love the breakfast so much that I haven’t developed the courage to do so.
A favorite is the omelette topped with a ladle of Franks’ meaty chili. A dash of hot sauce awaits daring diners.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial