Every day is good eats day at Jo Jo's in Strip District
Let others dine. Customers at Jo Jo's Restaurant come to eat. With the food police stripping the fun from menus coast to coast, this Strip District diner serves up old-fashioned fare like steak and eggs, Buick-sized omelets, teetering stacks of pancakes and their ubiquitous, buttery home fries. Every day is fry-day here. Opening near the crack of dawn and closing before rush hour, they turn out the kind of all-American comfort food that has sustained truck drivers, churchgoers and commuters for more than 20 years. The denizens of clubland -- such as bartenders finally off work and clubgoers who don't want to go home yet -- also flock to Jo Jo's for its fast and friendly service.
The low-profile diner hunkers down among the trendy urban lofts of upper Smallman Street. Owner Robin Flaherty inherited the business from her father, who opened the original restaurant at another location in 1986. Her children pitch in with running the place. They moved to their present location in 1994. They have their own parking lot, a big plus in this part of the city.
Jo Jo's Restaurant serves breakfast all day, beginning at 5 a.m. weekdays. If you're looking for ambience, you've come to the wrong place. The feast here is for the stomach, not the eyes. The bare, white walls are there to hold up the roof. Five ceiling fans turn overhead from a drop ceiling. The scrolled red benches at the booths and tables provide a spot of color. On the other side of the counter, coffee warms on multiple burners. A mountain of home fries can usually be seen piled up on one end of the grill. They must go through spuds by the truckload.
The portions are large, the prices modest. Flaherty says they make their own spaghetti sauce and roast their own turkey. Try the cold turkey sandwich ($4.25). It's so good you don't need condiments. They also have a selection of burgers, soups and dinner specialties, including chicken Parmesan ($6.75).
The menu includes steak and eggs with home fries and toast ($9.95) and the Jo Jo's Breakfast Sandwich ($5.95), served on toast, English muffin or bagel and featuring a fried egg, cheese and your choice of bacon, ham or sweet or hot sausage.
"They have the best potatoes and French toast in Pittsburgh," says Jim Cvetic, a boxer and former Allegheny County Police detective who says he eats there a couple of times a month. "The service is good, the place is good, it's Pittsburgh, man."
Those in the mood for a nosh can grab the homemade chili to go ($3.49 bowl; $2.69 cup). One of the best values and best-tasting selections is the Jo Jo Omelet ($8.50). It was huge, smothered in home fries. The eggs, melted cheese and sausage had a hot, savory consistency. The cost included a side of three pieces of toasted Italian bread.Additional Information:
Jo Jo's Restaurant
Location: 100 24th Street, Strip District
Hours: 5 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays through Fridays; 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays; 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sundays. Cash only
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Alcoa results help stocks stanch 2-day slide
- Penguins: Crosby’s right wrist may need surgery
- Body of missing Washington County man found in field near his home
- WPIAL denies eligibility for 2
- Pirates place Marte on bereavement leave; Liriano to start Sunday
- Two top corporations move HQs to Pittsburgh’s “dynamic marketplace”
- Thursday’s scouting report: Pirates at Cardinals
- Pitt women’s top recruit Gibson of Seton-La Salle headed to junior college
- Taxpayers on the hook for $1M more for Consol Energy Center lease
- NHL notebook: Blackhawks lock up Kane, Toews with 8-year extensions
- Argentina reaches World Cup final after penalties