Hours: Breakfast, Lunch: seven days
North-side diner that packs 'em in for pancakes and other breakfast delights.
Waiting for a table at Paulines on a weekend morning can be a highly directed experience. "Guys, I need you to sit right here," a host says, manhandling patrons toward a red vinyl bench in the entryway. He makes up for it by handing out Dixie cups of fresh orange juice. Diners can also dip into an enormous tub of Dum-Dum suckers while they watch pancakes bubble and swell on the grill. The wait is always worth it: Paulines combines the pleasures of an old-fashioned diner--five-egg omelets, lumberjack specials--with more sophisticated dishes such as "le toast etouffee" (bread pudding dipped in French toast batter). The "pancake trifecta" features one each of blueberry, banana, and strawberry--the fruit is stirred into the batter to create a thick, lacy-edged pancake studded with pockets of warm, sweet pulp. Service is fast and polite; the decor is cheerfully random (old Coca-Cola signs, Nagel posters, plastic tablecloths). Plus Paulines is open from 7 AM to 3 PM every day of the year. Its only failing: no waffles. What the hell?