You'll have to plan for this one. It's only open for breakfast and lunch Monday through Saturday. There are only about six or seven tables and maybe a dozen spots at the counter.
If you're lucky, Brian will be doing the cooking and his "out there" wife Shawna will sling the food at you. She's a dead ringer for the late Gilda Radner. The food is wonderful. The fixtures are practically original. The flowers outside are made of wood, but they're always in bloom. The numbers on the wall clock have all fallen off and have gathered at the bottom of the glass cover.
It's really called "Emma Jean's Holland Burger Cafe" and if you ask for Emma, she may just dazzle you with her six-year-old smile. You see, she was born right after her Grandmother Emma Jean passed away.
And if you want to have some fun, wink at Shawna and tell her the person next to you wants some ketchup. It's great to watch.
PROS: Great food, great prices, great fun, great people, great history
CONS: The desert sun can blast right through at times. That's all.
What a delightful place to stop on your way to and from Las Vegas or "The River." Just exit the I-15 Freeway at the Palmdale Road exit and go east one block. It's on the left.
It's hard to believe a place calling itself a diner can have such wonderful meat. The prices are great. The service is quite good. The banana splits are the best and the hot apple pie will make you feel like you're back home at Aunt Edna's place.
Don't leave without getting a genuine, old fashioned mild shake or malt.
Mystery Shopper would write more, but now he wants to head off to Richie's.
PROS: Steaks and other fine meats cooked on an outdoor barbecue
CONS: A tendency to fall asleep on the way home as a result of glut
Promises have absolutely no relationship to reality. They keep time using a clock or calendar from some other world. The term "good faith estimate" there can be translated into "Dream on, Buster. It's a good thing most people don't read the final contract."
Mystery Shopper regrets ever dealing with these folks.
CONS: That might be harsh, but . . . .
The folks at Brian Motors told Mystery Shoppers there were no smaller cars available that day -- he would have to keep the expensive big car he had rented a while longer .
Don't mess with Mystery Shopper. Mystery Shopper's faithful sidekick called one minute later and asked for a tiny subcompact and the folks at Brian Motors said, "We have a lot of them to chose from. Come on over."
Mystery Shopper will never visit Brian Motors again.
CONS: Elusive descriptions of reality. Cars are rarely clean. Excuses. Too many.
Folks who've been in the Victorville area for a while have come to know that if you want the very best service from the most honest mechanics, you must go to Duane's Automotive.
Duane oversees all of the work and ensures everyone drives out happy.
He'll do your required maintenance at a fraction of the price the dealers charge. And if there's something you don't need, you can count on Duane to not try to sell it to you.
PROS: Honesty, integrity, top-notch abilities, great prices
CONS: Duane won't work on old clunkers
It's not the trendy, rubber-stamp Italian restaurant you see in every trendy section. You know the ones -- after you've committed to a $5 valet ride for the car you sit at some tiny table with wire chairs and wish you could get regular iced tea instead of the fruity, trendy stuff. It's not one where you're shoulder-to-shoulder with balding, pony-tailed L.A. guys trying to believe the 20-year-old actress wannabe is really interested in him and not his money or power. It's not a place where every server is ready to show you their SAG card if you look the least bit connected. No, Genio's is a wonderful, family-owned restaurant still serving the great Italian food they served 50 years ago. Genio has passed on, but his son Marvin and grandson Jimmy will make sure you have a great booth or table and his granddaughter, Christine, will serve up some great pasta, steaks, seafood or whatever. It ain't a pizza place, but it has the best garlic bread you'll find for miles. Oh, and when you come out, there won't be a panhandler there and your car's windows will still be in tact.
PROS: Great food, good prices, wonderful service, homey atmosphere.
CONS: You're likely to see the same server there for the next decade.