It has been nearly a year since I reviewed the Wayside Café so this week it was back on the menu. I’m glad we went because we had a wonderful dining experience.
Ambiance: The Wayside café is like two restaurants in one, with two separate dining rooms. As a diner you are allowed to sit wherever you feel like and for some reason we have always taken seats in the south dining room. It is quieter than the north dining room, not that it is noisy, but the south dining room is where we prefer to dine. The Wayside has the feel of a 1950’s restaurant and by this I mean it is quaint, personal and feels like home. The wait staff was excellent, giving us all the attention, we needed but also leaving us alone so we could enjoy our meal.
Seating: I must be a booth guy because that is where I always want to sit. The booths at Wayside are big and can easily accommodate four full sized adults. There are tables in the center of the dining room, and wouldn’t you know it – they also have a full-length bar where you can pull up a seat and chat with your neighbors as you eat. The booths sit against the windows allowing in lots of natural light but in the afternoon they would be a little bit warm with the sun blazing in as it streaks across the sky.
Noise: Though the Wayside is along the Burley/Rupert Highway, the noise from outside the restaurant was negligible. The kitchen was quiet as well with the only real talking going on between the waitresses and the customers. The Wayside is definitely a place where they will quickly know your name.
Bathrooms: You will be pleased to know the bathrooms are modern, roomy and were very clean. With the number of patrons that go through the Wayside on any particular day the bathrooms could easily get forgotten. The other thing I like about the Wayside bathrooms is that they are down a hall, well away from either of the dining rooms.
Service: We had a wonderful server. She was patient with us as we scanned their menu looking for something that sounded good to eat. Once I saw that they had liver and onions on the menu I knew what I was going to have for lunch. We pretty much had the dining room, and our server, to ourselves.
Food: My wife elected to go with a cheeseburger and fries while my lunch came with a salad, a generous serving of liver and onions, a piping hot homemade roll, steamed corn and a delicious slice of peach cake with a generous dollop of whipping cream on top. Both of our meals came with generous portion sizes making it difficult for us to finish everything on our plate. The soft drinks were nearly $3 each which was a little steep but not out of line for this kind of restaurant.
The Wayside has numerous regulars who come in for everything from coffee to prime rib dinners. If you are longing for a beautiful home-cooked meal you need look no further than the Wayside. I was impressed with the variety of meals packed into their menu. There are six pages of options and breakfast is served all day long.
Our last dining experience at the Wayside wasn’t what we had expected but the staff totally redeemed themselves with the effort they gave us this time. I should thank the person who encouraged us to give the Wayside another try because without that encouragement we might have totally written the Wayside off going forward.
Value: Our meal came to right at $25 but $6 of that was for soft drinks. Had we skipped the sodas we would have been out the door for less than $20. All throughout the menu you will find numerous food options at prices that will keep you coming back. The fact that the Wayside is a one-off restaurant and not part of a restaurant chain also helps to keep their prices in line.
If you haven’t gone to the Wayside in a while I would encourage you to get back there. The menu is substantial and if you can’t find something you want to eat you are simply too picky. I know I’ll be going back and it won’t take me a year to do so.