Washingtonian Magazine

Best of NoVA 2016: Diners

"A certified Triple D establishment (appeared on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives with Guy Fieri), Metro 29 is a diner that's perfected not only breakfast staples and triple-decker sandwiches but also its famed (and televised!) roasted leg of lamb."

November 2016

Washingtonian October 2012 magazine
Arlington Magazine

Best of Arlington 2015 - Best Breakfast

Twenty years ago, the Bota and Kanellias families came together with a handshake deal to open Metro 29 Diner. They brought with them years of experience working in New York diners, where they had learned the importance of serving breakfast ’round the clock.

That mantra continues at Metro 29, where you can get made-from-scratch pancakes and waffles anytime—or the French toast, if you want to mimic Guy Fieri’s order during his 2010 visit for Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

But the Metro 29 experience is about more than the food. The owners serve big hugs of hospitality that keep customers coming back. “We have people who eat two meals here a day,” says co-owner Peter Bota. “When they don’t show, we worry.” He’s even called to check up on customers.

That care also extends to staff members, several of whom have been working at Metro 29 since 1995. These familiar faces, paired with consistently good breakfast, can make a meal at Metro 29 feel as comfortable as mom’s kitchen.

Arlington Magazine
February 2015

Best of Arlington 2015
Washingtonian Magazine

Diners, Delis, and Greasy Spoons

"The diner breakfast is alive and well at this Art Deco ode to Americana. Decidedly more glam than the ma- and-pa diners of yesteryear, Metro is known for is supersized plates of fluffy pancakes, Greek omelets studded with feta, tomato, and onion, and thick, eggy French toast (the kitchen uses house-made challah, but the syrup, alas, isn’t real maple). Silver-dollar pancakes are small, but stacked high. And if dessert for breakfast appeals, hefty waffles with whipped cream and strawberries might be just the thing.”

Washingtonian Magazine
October 2012

Washingtonian October 2012 magazine
Washington Post Magazine

The Power of Breakfast:
Diner Pancakes and How They Stack Up

The following ratings use a scale of one syrup pitcher (the worst) to five pitchers (the best). And there are half pitchers, to make this highly scientific system even more precise. Pancakes tasted were of the no-frills variety, listed either as “hot cakes,” “griddle cakes” or just plain old “pancakes.” Some were designated as “buttermilk,” although a buttermilk tang was nowhere to be found.

Note that none of the pancakes rated a perfect five, since none of them met the challenge of being both flavorful and fluffy. Here they are, from best to worst.

**Metro 29 listed first (Best) 4 1/2 pitchers**
This glitzy, Miami Beach-ish done in mauve, seafoam green and etched glass came closest to meeting the challenge. Three thick, fluffy and -gorgeous hot cakes arrived, tasting just a bit as if they had been poured on the griddle right after batch of onions or hash brown. No matter. Butter and syrup hide all the sins.

– Carol Sugarman Washington Post Staff Writer

Washington Post magazine

Capital Cuisine

"Metro 29’s gleaming silver facade shines from Langston Blvd like a beacon to hungry passerby, and locals consider this one of their favorite go-to spots for just about everything. Though the interior is being remodeled to give the diner a fresh, new look, the friendly, welcoming atmosphere and exceptional made from scratch food remains as incredible as ever. The restaurant is open just about around the clock for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, dessert and late night (they’re open until at least 1 am nightly). Breakfast is served all day (golden pancakes are known among many to be the best in town), and choices run the gamut, including juicy burgers, mile-high sandwiches, crisp salads, meaty steaks, tender chops, and Mediterranean specialties. You can even enjoy daily seafood specials and, for a true classic treat, a thick milkshake or egg cream really hits the spot. Weekend brunch is a lively, animated affair, and homemade desserts end any meal on a high note.”

The Washington Post Magazine
April 6, 2008

Washington Post magazine
Washington Business Journal

Journal Profile: Stuart C. Davidson
Clyde’s serves up a 20th Century History Lesson

“My idea of a great restaurant is Metro 29,” Davidson says.

That’s a diner on Langston Blvd in Arlington, the sort of place that’s all shiny aluminum and neon signs, and peopled by neighborhood folks. “Eat a lot, don’t pay much, have fun,” according to Zagat.

by Pat Lopes Harris, Staff Reporter
Washington Business Journal October 30-November 5, 1998, page 33

Founder of Clyde's
Washington Post magazine

Annual Dining Guide

"The owners of Metro 29 Diner come from Long Island, probably second only to New Jersey as America’s diner stronghold. The classic touches are all here - chrome and glass blocks, jukeboxes in the booths, Formica tables, and lots of neighbors saying to each other. But it’s the food that makes Metro 29 great. It’s no longer a given when you eat out these days that the kitchen cooks and bakes from scratch. This one does. The pancakes have been written up as the best around, and are made the old-fashioned way, with fresh eggs and a dash of vanilla. Burgers are big and juicy, with excellent onion rings and fries. Metro 29 also makes superb full-course dinners with steaks, chops, and daily seafood specials served with homemade soups, salads and sides. The diner serves great food and a lot of it. Along with the traditional booths and counter, Metro 29 has a spacious, comfortable dining room with more of a restaurant feel. Commuters love to stop in for dinner to go. Night owls love the late hours. And at what other diner can you order a bottle of chardonnay or merlot with your meal, or end the night with a cordial while the kids dig into an ice cream sundae? There’s something for everyone.”

The Washington Post Magazine
October 15, 2006

Founder of Clyde's

The Dining Guide 2007

“Since opening in 1995, Metro 29 has become a favored go-to spot among diners for just about everything, in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere evocative of “Happy Days.” From breakfast, weekend brunch and lunch, to dinner, dessert and late night (until at least 1am nightly), happy patrons feast upon burgers, mile-high sandwiches, crisp salads, juicy steaks, daily seafood specials and homemade desserts. Whatever you order, the kitchen cooks from scratch - and it shows.

The Washington Post Magazine
October 14, 2007

Founder of Clyde's

Satisfying Breakfasts

“Connoisseurs of the big breakfast may meet their match at this diner with its wooden booths, table jukeboxes and wisecracking waitresses. The portions are huge and the fixings classic: eggs over easy with thick slices of baked ham, crusty home fries, and a Greek omelet loaded with tomato, onion, and feta. Java is done right, too: dark, muddy, and served in thick-lipped cups.”

Washingtonian Magazine, March 2008