El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells guest hosts this episode of Everything East County featuring Black Bear Diner. WIth 130+ stores, Black Bear Diner is open 365 days a year serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Address: 1025 Fletcher Pkwy
El Cajon, CA 92020
Sunday – Thursday:
6:00am – 10:00pm
Friday and Saturday:
6:00am – 10:00pm
Today on Everything East County, we’re at one of my favorite breakfast restaurants, in America, Black Bear Diner, and a special guest host, Mayor Bill Wells of El Cajon. Let’s get to it.
I’m Bill Wells, you can call me Bill.
So, I’m really excited about this. You know I think I stopped in one of these places, when I was driving down from Sacramento one day.
Yeah, yeah, it started up in Northern California, and then just kind of been moving south and out east.
So how did it start? I mean this is kind of a unique, decorating motif. How did this start?
Yeah, so it started in ’95, up in Mount Shasta, by Bruce and Bob, the founders, they just wanted a place that their friends and family, could come eat. Took over an old diner that wasn’t working out at the time, apparently did something right, and about, what is it now, 26, 27 years later, 130 stores.
Wow. So you think it’s the food or the decor or both?
I think first and foremost good food, second service is second to none. We really focus on service. We train our staff, you can get food anywhere. You really come for the atmosphere and the service. Our goal is drop a log cabin, in the middle of a beach town right. So, we wanted some country cookin’. You’d think we started somewhere, out in Texas or Montana but, right up here in California. People of El Cajon can expect big portions, a family friendly environment, where at 6:00am to 10:00 pm., we’re open 365 days a year. The motto is, Black Bear feels like home. So we want, all of El Cajon and anybody who walks through those doors, to feel like they’re at home.
Yeah this really is a homey place. So, what’s the, if you had to recommend the best thing to eat here, what would you recommend?
The menu’s so big you can find a new favorite everyday. I love the Bob’s Big Bear burger, which I think we’re going to let you try a little bit later.[Bill] That’s super.
The taco salad, which is like, you could feed a family of four, and then put the baby in the salad, in the taco shell, ’cause it’s that big.
We frown on putting babies in the salad.
We’re not going to, after we’re done eating. And then, probably the volcano, ’cause you get a little bit of eggs. You get some pancakes. You get some meat with it. You get pretty much all you need for breakfast.
It sounds like a great place. I’m looking forward to eating.
Absolutely. Well let’s get to it then.
All right, let’s do it.
So we’re making the Bob’s Big Bear burger.
It’s pretty much the way I describe it, it’s pretty much a mini pizza sized burger. So they take two, two patties, mash them together, so we get a big ole 10 ounce patty. They prep them in the morning. Put it down on the grill. They put some Montreal burger seasoning on the top. And now we just let it cook. I think you ordered it medium rare, so it wouldn’t be too long. But, now we just wait.
So what makes a burger, one burger better than another?
I think first fresh ground beef, good seasoning, cooking to temp, not just throw it on the grill. We don’t hold any burgers. We wait for you to order it, before we put it on the grill. So it’s not fast food. Everything is prepped fresh, kept in a freezer, and when you’re ready to eat it, we throw it on the grill. Even right now, you’re going to see, as it cooks, we don’t use any presses, so it keeps the juice in there. They put a dome on top. So again it takes a little bit longer, but again we expect, the food to be worth the wait when you get it.[Kyle] It pains me when I see somebody, put a burger on a grill and smash it down. Like what are you doing?
Yeah and all that juice and it adds flavor, it leaks out. No, my point, I’m a vegetarian and even I know that. Now he’s throwing–[Kyle] That would be impossible burger I mean hey.
We have that on the menu too. Any burger we have, you can put impossible patty on. The only one that would be tough is a Bob’s burger.
Okay. That’s awesome.
Just ’cause it’s so big.
Yeah.[Karan] Now they threw down some onions, ’cause we ordered yours deluxe style. So you got grilled onions, mushrooms, and some melted cheese on top. So you can see they’re grilling up the onions, right next to your patty. [Kyle] Speaking to my belly, baby. [Karan] There you go, there you go.
So are you ready to dive into this?
Absolutely. I always love breakfast for dinner when I was a kid.
It’s breakfast for dinner.
All right well let’s do it Mayor.
All right let’s do it. Oh my God. That’s really good.
It’s delicious. Sometimes you go places where they go big, then you loose that quality, where you’re going purely for quantity. That burger is tasty. Super, super tender.
But you’re smart. You came hungry.
Yes I starved myself.
And so everything tastes better when you’re hungry, but I think it looks pretty good.
It does. How are the pancakes?
Good, you want to try some?
I will yeah. Can we?
We can share.
Not that side. Ah I’m just kidding. Go ahead. Take what you want.
That is a totally different taste. I love that. So freaking fluffy and it’s sweet. Guys if you’re looking for an awesome breakfast spot, in East County, you need to come check it out. Black Bear Diner, they’re in the old Coco’s on Fletcher Parkway. They’ve got breakfast, lunch, dinner, amazing stuff. So please if you guys enjoyed this video, like it, comment on it, most importantly share it, so more people can learn about these guys. Thanks so much for watching this episode, of Everything East County.
And thanks for having me for breakfast for dinner.