White's Restaurant

If you're having a conversation about "favorite breakfast" restaurants in Salem, it wouldn't surprise me if White's Restaurant was brought into the discussion. Rightfully, the sign above the door brags about being in business "since 1936." That's around the year that they started building the current state capitol building. But this place isn't stuck in the past, it's been remodeled recently and is as cozy as ever. Diner's come here all hours of the day for their great food and outstanding service. If you've been here before, the server is sure to recognize you and make you feel like your eating at home. This kind of service makes White's a hangout for some of Salem's most colorful characters. There's even
a menu item named after one of these patrons called "Maynard's Meatloaf." Maynard Drawson is a fixture at White's, known for his friendly demeanor. If you see him there, say hi and if he's not in a deep conversation with someone else, he might be your best friend for a few moments. He has plenty of stories to tell, he's known around Oregon as the "Tree Man." For $6 his meatloaf is one of the best deals on the menu. The portion is a bit small but you don't feel guilty or bloated after eating it. Although tables are full throughout the day, breakfast is the most popular attraction. Pancakes are light and fluffy, bacon, thick and meaty, omelettes are huge. My kids love the Mickey pancake on the children's menu. Instead of using chocolate chips for the eyeballs, White's puts in bananas. I think that's great and helpful when we're trying to teach them that fruit is fun and delicious. What more can you say about this place except that it's clean and reasonably priced. If you've haven't eaten here already you probably don't live in Salem, at least not South Salem.

1138 Commercial St SE
Salem, OR 97302
(503) 363-0297


17 comments:

jeff said...

Ah, an under-known Salem institution.

Anonymous said...

White's:

I have been going for years.

Food: C- the same type of food you would find while driving across the country and pulling into a truck stop at 8 pm somewhere in a small town in Wisconsin. The cooks are skilled, but they use the bare minimum quality of food they can get away with.

Service A+++ there are some waitresses that have been there for quite a while: Leannn, Katie, and Brooke... they are what bring the customers back. Friendly, efficient, and they hustle hustle hustle.

Atomosphere A+ cool old school diner.

If you want a great place to meet someone for breakfast or go alone and drink a lot of bitter, cheap gas station coffee and read the paper by yourself, White's is great.

If you want great food, try off center (terrible service and last time I was there - ants, but the food is great) or Busick Court.

Anonymous said...

I love salem's diners. Good food and great service, don't be afraid to go into any of them whites, ritz, Josey's all of them more than welcome you. I always walk away happy, I can't say that about the chain resturants (roadhouse house, Olive garden, and applebee's) I have had many bad expierances at the chain resturants not to mention there usually double the price. Next time you even think about eating at one of the named chain resturants, rethink it and try one of the named salem diners.

Anonymous said...

Great review. I will be taking the family there soon.

Jasindra said...

The last time I ate at White's everyone in my party had some major gastrointestinal issues. I spoke with a friend who used to do a weekly morning breakfast meeting there every week for about 10 years with a group of people. They changed their breakfast location after getting sick three weeks in a row.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad Salem has White's, but it is not the best breakfast place in town. I'd give that to Busick Court. Off Center has an awesome breakfast (Tofu Scramble!), but the place grosses me out, and they're not very friendly. I do like that the owner makes no apologies for its politics.

White's and Off Center are interesting places and Busick less interesting, but I have to give it to Busick. Suggestion for Busick: Stop handing me wrinkled and stained paper menus.

If you want a super clean and decent breakfast, check out Broadway Cafe in N. Salem.

Anonymous said...

We recently move to Salem after living in NYC, Wash DC, Calif, Knoxville and Pittsburgh,PA. We are having a lot of trouble finding good restaurants in Salem. We tried White's for breakfast and dinner. We were very disappointed in the quality of food and the service, our waitresses weren't friendly and seemed to care less about serving us. The food wasn't bad just very uninteresting and over cooked, more like hospital food.

Anonymous said...

The only thing they get right here is hiring good morning time waitresses.

The food is average at best.

How it is possible to make such bitter coffee (vinegar)?

They stripped the quality of the food product over the past six or so years.

Too bad, because it is a great old place that has been around forever.

Anonymous said...

dood i need A JOBE HOOK ME UP WITH WHITES....

Anonymous said...

We went there hoping to find a decent cafe.. we were very disappointed with the service and the quality of food. After waiting 15 minutes for service, my husband asked for NO MAYO on his sandwich and 10 minutes later, we had to send his sandwich back. We will not be returning ever. Thumbs down.

Maggie said...

Thanks leaving the URL for our Salem Snaps blog in the photo of Maynard.

Thanks,
http://salemsnaps.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Whites isn't that good food-wise, it's pretty plain diner food that I don't care for. It has good atmosphere though.

Anonymous said...

If you are looking for a good breakfast...
go to Neufeldt's Restaurant in Aumsville!!!!
It is worth the drive!!!!!

Anonymous said...

My daughter and I had lunch there yesterday. The service was wonderful and the food was excellant.

Anonymous said...

Whites is not too bad, little greasy. Want a good breakfast try Court St. Dairy Lunch downtown salem, great food. Whites has a great staff

Anonymous said...

We live in Monmouth. We have some great restuarnts here in Monmouth and Independence. But when we are in Salem: Whites is he place we love the most. Walt & Melanie

Anonymous said...

I read the above comments...which most were pretty neg, which is too bad. I use to work there when Bob and Carole white Owned the place and Zelda and Karen were the cooks. Zelda and her turkey were famous back then. Miss those days.