Hank’s Creekside Diner

Let me first say that Hank's is never going to be included in the annals of haute cuisine. It's diner food. Good diner food for the most part. But diner food.

Want to know the number one restaurant search on BiteClub?

Nope. Not French Laundry. Not Cyrus or Syrah or any of the Stark’s restaurants. Oddly enough, it’s Hank’s Creekside Diner.
dead serious–the quirky little Santa Rosa breakfast diner that’s been
around forever, served up countless banana chocolate chip pancakes and
been a reliable hangover helper to the post-party crowd. The place
where we all sit around reading the paper on Saturday and Sunday
mornings waiting for a table. That Hank’s.
Now, keep in mind I’m
not a Hank’s virgin by any means. Their burgers ain’t half-bad in my
book and that view. Oh, the view. If you’re lucky enough to get a table
by the window, it’s one of the most relaxing spots in town at a
rock-bottom price. But embarrassingly enough, I wasn’t among the ranks of the breakfast club until just last week. The omelette and toast thing just isn’t my scene. But for you, I endured.
me first say that Hank’s is never going to be included in the annals of
haute cuisine. It’s diner food. Good diner food for the most part. But
diner food. It’s fluffy pancakes as big as your head, sausage, eggs and
Huevos Rancheros. But what sets Hank’s apart from, say, Denny’s or IHop
is the local cred and homemade touch. Biscuits are made from scratch,
eggs are fresh and the cottage fries are, Oh My God good.
tend to vere toward the familiar — eggs, pancakes and bacon. If you’re
up for a splurge–and I mean a artery-clogging blow-out–go for the Crab Cake Benedict. It’s two somewhat meager, but tasty crab cakes sandwiched between English muffins on soft boiled eggs topped with pools of Hollandaise.

Biscuits smothered with homemade sausage gravy

also get high marks, along with outrageous omelettes stuffed with everything from ham to lox and cream cheese.
recent plug on the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives gave
Hank’s some momentary celebrity starpower, but it doesn’t seem to have
changed much else. The pancakes are just as fluffy. The view from your
breakfast table is just as spectacular. And the wait is just as agonizing.
Hank’s Creekside Diner, 2800 Fourth Street, Santa Rosa, 707.575.8839.

Hank's Creekside on Urbanspoon

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3 thoughts on “Hank’s Creekside Diner

  1. Posted By: Sonoma County Forever (15/08/2008 7:41:29 PM)
    Comment: Sorry but I don’t get it. Hank’s just ain’t THAT good. Hell, it barely makes average in this market. There are so many better options why do people choose run of the mill grub at slightly too high prices and put up with the wait. Yeah there is an okay view overlooking Santa Rosa Creek but the traffic noise from 4th & Farmer’s Lane makes that less than ideal.
    Posted By: Whine Country (14/08/2008 12:50:12 AM)
    Comment: The last time my husband and I ate at Hanks, we both wanted to throw up, it was kinda gross, unless you like hungover teenagers making breakfast for you. If you enjoy inexpensive breakfast food made by dirty, sweaty teeanagers, than Hanks is for you! (I must say, I haven’t been there in seven years, it may have changed, got too grossed out to go back.) Enjoy!
    Posted By: Jajean (13/08/2008 3:21:18 PM)
    Comment: The Piner Cafe on of course Piner Road in Santa Rosa is by far the best breakfast spot in Santa Rosa. The food is fresh, hot, portioned for a hungry person, wait staff is very nice, homey feel and sometimes you have to wait 30 minutes for a table so get a coffee and a paper on your way and relax, it is so worth it!@
    Posted By: Mark (13/08/2008 3:06:29 PM)
    Comment: Man I miss Ingram’s too =( ….Any “Friendly Kitchen” in Rohnert Park people? Simple, cheap and good…And as the name of the place says, they’re friendly there!
    Posted By: shana (31/07/2008 6:02:11 PM)
    Comment: if you’re looking for gourmet like these other snobs, go ahead and keep looking. however, hanks is the small town hole in the wall that you want to crawl into on a sunday morning. it’s notorious for their wait, and they didn’t get that way with horrible food people. they love what they do, and they love who they serve: northern californians.
    Posted By: Shannon (26/07/2008 12:43:53 AM)
    Comment: My husband and I went to Hanks about 7 years ago, it was pretty disgusting. The food was prepared by long haired grungy looking teeneagers. I think my husband ordered the chiken fried steak. On the way home he made me pull over so he could vomit. We haven’t been back since.
    Posted By: Big D “Hank you know me” (23/07/2008 3:50:01 PM)
    Comment: Santa Rosa has been draped in the tradition of great morning breakfast diners or cafe’s. I remember growing up and going to the breakfast buffet at the El Rancho Tropicana (hmmmm)or how about the first omelette house called True Grits ( the Denver omelette was to die for),or like one our collegues mentioned down below the oh so missed Ingrams chilli (yes, I want it in the red). There have been that have came and gone, there are those who have stood the test of time. Sam’s for Play, the Cookhouse, and Piner Cafe and they are all do their props, but lets not hate and say Hanks isn’t up there with the best. I remember when sausage wasn’t popular for breakfast and Hank’s changed that. Please folks, any couple who can have six kids in only three births is top with me. Hank and Linda keep up the great work, I’ll be by for breakfast soon. God bless.
    Posted By: Kim (15/07/2008 10:54:34 AM)
    Comment: On a more Positive note, I Highly recommend my all-time-favorite breakfast joint: CARLOS’ COUNTRY KITCHEN (corner of W. College and Dutton in Santa Rosa)- American greasy spoon style sans the grease. They’re still doin’ the way Azar did it (the way its s’posed to be dun): attentive fast service, hot, tasty food (try scrambled eggs with diced ham and add the to-die-for gravy—yummm), steamin’ fresh (folgers style)coffee, and clean tables. Been goin’ there for over 10 years.
    Posted By: Kim (15/07/2008 10:36:55 AM)
    Comment: If Margarine and Velveeta Cheese are what you’ve come to expect in a restaurant breakfast (along with parkin’ your ve-heicle in yer frunt yard), THEN By All Means, Hanks is the place for you…but def NOT me and my kind. YUK!!
    Posted By: JT (09/07/2008 8:52:43 AM)
    Comment: I miss Ingrams Chili Bowl…..Eggs in the red anybody?
    Posted By: Mike Kelly (02/07/2008 8:26:05 PM)
    Comment: No “Piner Cafe” folk out there? Maybe it’s just too “UN”, like in “un-fussey” but the girls all flirt with aging baby boomers like myself and they have some interesting “Specials”. Big old pancakes, good french toast but another one of those places where ambience equates to satisfaction.
    Posted By: dkenworthy (25/06/2008 7:30:04 AM)
    Comment: Second on the recommendation for the Creekside on Boyes Blvd. Great food, nice old time atmosphere, good service. The best omelets, far better than Hanks or Omelet Express, in my opinion. Great Chicken fried steak as well as good eggs benedict on the weekends.
    Posted By: Cricketts (24/06/2008 11:28:41 AM)
    Comment: If we are talking about the best breakfast in Sonoma County I would like to mention the Garden Court Bakery and Café in Glen Ellen. I have eaten at a lot of breakfast places but I have never had this great of an experience. They have a great menu and different specials every week. Umm Meyer lemon waffles and a great rendition of Joes eggs. They bake their own bread and biscuits and the servings are ample. If you like the traditional american breakfast I suggest the Hungry Wolf with homemade sausage Oh my God!!! Worth the drive and wait.
    Posted By: Dolly (23/06/2008 11:57:50 AM)
    Comment: Havn’t tried Hank’s the line is way to long on the weekends. I love Pages on College ave in the G&G shopping center.
    Posted By: foodGUY (22/06/2008 11:56:23 AM)
    Comment: Hank’s is overrated! try the HILLSIDE,LEGENDS@BCGC,FLAVORS IS THE BOMB like BRUNO’S, MAC’S !
    Posted By: Ken (21/06/2008 9:24:34 PM)
    Comment: If I was planning on a meal that was going to be an “investment” I’d consult Jeff Cox or the BiteClub. My son recently spent $600 for dinner at The French Laundry and the bill didn’t bother him for at least 72 hours when the date wore off. Even the reviewer in his slightly condescending way has to admit there are intangibles beyond haute cuisine that keep lots of ‘little people’ coming back to Hanks for a bite. Yea, the views are pleasant, the food as the review say’s “ain’t half bad”, but it’s that there’s a place intrinsically people friendly, welcoming, rock root American that one enters when you cross that threshold, that keeps the seats full and makes you feel even if you’re waiting for a seat to free up, you’re in the right place at the right time. Everyone got a days work ahead of them when they walk in the door at Hank’s, but for the next 30-45 minutes, they can expect to be with some of Sonoma County’s best neighbors; and treated not just to a reliable meal but also to that kind of genuine heart felt respect from a core-team there to do their best to make the beginning of your day positive, friendly and fun.
    Posted By: eatmyshorts (20/06/2008 2:57:01 PM)
    Comment: Who leaves a comment about a breakfast place that has NOTHING to do with the breakfast, but talks about the obese and morbidly obese people having to walk to get to it…This is a foodblog you douchebag, not a place for you to vent your hatred for fatties…Hank’s rocks, and personally…whenever I see fat people going to eat breakfast at a has a great chance of being good…In this case, Hank’s is delicious…and lovesthelaw should spread their poison elsewhere…What a LOSER!! LOL
    Posted By: Dr. Twilight (19/06/2008 10:02:36 AM)
    Comment: So, where would y’all go in SR or Healdsburg for some good whole grain, healthy style breakfast food?
    Posted By: Me (18/06/2008 8:35:07 PM)
    Comment: Cookhouse, Sam’s for Play and Carlos’ get our vote. Unpretentious, nothing fancy, just plain good and filling. Flaky Cream in Healdsburg didn’t know what to do when I asked for Ham & Eggs without the eggs. She was going to charge me extra to hold the eggs! And I don’t like paying for a full cup of hot cocoa and only recieving half a cup. I will never ever go back to Omelette Express. Have tried it three times and got slow service and unhappy waitresses. If you are going to be slow with the food, at least get me a glass of water!
    Posted By: Roger W. Hamilton (18/06/2008 5:52:57 PM)
    Comment: What’s wrong with Page’s in the G&G Shopping Center? I’ve eaten at both, I’ll Stick with Pages.
    Posted By: Lovesthelaw (18/06/2008 3:28:22 PM)
    Comment: I drive past this restaurant every Sat. a.m. about 9:15. The place is packed; people are lined up outside and are walking across the crosswalk at Farmers/4th St. and most of the people I see are obese, and some morbidly obese. But due to limited parking at the restaurant, they at least have to walk to and from the door a little ways.
    Posted By: bonnie (18/06/2008 2:43:46 PM)
    Comment: If you want a good diner breakfast, try out Louie’s (corner of 3rd and Fulton). Service is good, food is good and always cooked just the way we ask–and yummy home fries. But for omelets–the ONLY place in town to go is Omelet Express in Railroad Square. That’s the only place where I consistently get an omelet that’s cooked right–done, not runny, and served hot. But I have to admit, we’ve never been to Hank’s. May have to try it sometime (but not on the weekend).
    Posted By: rockysizzle (18/06/2008 11:58:58 AM)
    Comment: We went to Hanks for my birthday, it was during the week so no wait =) I have to say that their corned beef hash was out of this world! I also like Tubby’s in Cotati. I love breakfast diners!! Thanks for the other places to check out!
    Posted By: Shari (18/06/2008 10:26:19 AM)
    Comment: I don’t think a 45 minute wait is appealing. I personally think Carlo’s Country Kitchen on West College Avenue is great.
    Posted By: dluv (18/06/2008 9:58:40 AM)
    Comment: never been to hanks, but heard good things, and the 45 min wait defenitely speaks to their popularity. been to singleltree in Hburg once, and never again, no thanks. Flakey Cream, also in Hburg every time. Good honest food and they have doughnuts. What else do you want?
    Posted By: Luda Fiske (18/06/2008 7:30:46 AM)
    Comment: Hanks is OK and some of the others mentioned are also OK. For really good you have to drive to Occidental and eat at Howards. For truly superb you have to drive to Lone Pine, near Mt. Whitney, at eat the ham & eggs at the Alabama Cafe.
    Posted By: Christine (17/06/2008 10:00:13 PM)
    Comment: Adding to the confusion about that #1 search ranking — There’s another Creekside Cafe with alot of loyal fans on Boyes Blvd. in Sonoma Valley. They serve up some great breakfasts and lunches, and no 45 minute wait! Though there should be — The chef, Marco, also works evenings at the Cafe LaHaye in Sonoma,so he knows what he’s doing. Creekside emphasizes local products and makes most everything from scratch — A nice, funky local hang-out. Worth checking out.
    Posted By: food girl (17/06/2008 8:27:58 PM)
    Comment: Hank’s is good, but really not worth the wait. The best place for breakfast in SoCo is Singletree in Healdsburg. Stuffed French toast, corned beef hash, Machaca.Oh my god the Machaca is served every other Sunday but it is the BEST thing I have ever had. Every thing is fresh and its got that diner feel. We even saw Charlie Palmer eating his breakfast there, so you know it’s good.
    Posted By: xtinaznap (17/06/2008 8:13:17 PM)
    Comment: Bruno’s is one of my favorite breakfast places in town. High quality ingredients, worth the little extra you spend there. The best eggs benedict I’ve ever had. I like Hanks, it’s a cozy hometown place, and never has disappointed me, but I’d agree that the food is diner level…Bruno’s is way above that. I want to try Flavors now!
    Posted By: zen4life (17/06/2008 8:09:08 PM)
    Comment: I don’t understand all the fuss about Hank’s, the best place in town for breakfast is Dierk’s Parkside! The incredible diversity of food whether it’s something as simple as pancakes or eggs, or more creative like its fabulous huevos rancheros, poached egg salad, and duck confit, is unequaled in Santa Rosa!!! Plus the service is friendly and good.
    Posted By: johng (17/06/2008 7:23:32 PM)
    Comment: Renie, Bruno’s is on 4th St. a couple blocks east of College; Flavor is on Courthouse square.
    Posted By: Greenman (17/06/2008 4:36:05 PM)
    Comment: Hank’s is an OK spot, but my money goes to Singletree in Healdsburg. Their (homemade) corned beef hash is the best I’ve had anywhere. Always friendly, food cooked as you ordered it. Some very decent BBQ on the lunch menu as well.
    Posted By: Renie (17/06/2008 4:27:39 PM)
    Comment: Haven’t had the patience to brave Hank’s but the comments aren’t exactly encouraging either. I’ve been to Adel’s and was singularly not impressed. Will try the Cookhouse (sorry Crissy)- think I can find it on A…but where is Bruno’s and Flavor’s? Those sound very much like good bets…Anybody want to give me some direction here?
    Posted By: Crissy (17/06/2008 4:18:57 PM)
    Comment: I have never been to Hank’s but the best place for breakfast is The Cookhouse on A Street. Please don’t try it.
    Posted By: Pete (17/06/2008 3:27:17 PM)
    Comment: I’ve never understood the fuss about Hank’s. It serves up decent diner food but why the popularity? To me it tastes about as good as Adel’s.
    Posted By: johng (17/06/2008 2:15:29 PM)
    Comment: Hank’s is okay, but why wait outside there for 45 minutes when you can walk into nearby Bruno’s and get much better grub right away. . Also agree about Emiles. That was the coolest restaurant in town for quite a while. The waiter was great, and the food was cheap, authentic, and amazingly good.
    Posted By: Mike (17/06/2008 2:07:03 PM)
    Comment: I agree.. Flavors tops all the places in town.. the service may be slow.. but so worth the wait.. the food is AMAZING.. try their seafood pasta for brunch.. AWSOME.
    Posted By: NANCY (17/06/2008 2:04:59 PM)
    Comment: the only place to eat a good breakfast is Flavors.. they have the best Eggs Benedict ever.. and their potatoes.. AMAZING.
    Posted By: NANCY (17/06/2008 2:04:51 PM)
    Comment: the only place to eat a good breakfast is Flavors.. they have the best Eggs Benedict ever.. and their potatoes.. AMAZING.
    Posted By: Dre’ (17/06/2008 2:04:06 PM)
    Comment: I have lived in SR for 40+ years. A lot of folks I know raved about this place for years. So I gave it a try, 3 times over a couple of months. Never, Never again. The wait was not worth the noise once I got in and the food was not that great. Out of the 3 times I went I had hair in my food twice. Of all the times I had to send food back for being cold, under done you name it. The gravy tasted like that stuff in a jar at Thanksgiving, not good! If you really want a GREAT breakfast, go the The Cook House on “A” Street. Chicken Friend Steak is do die for. Although the potatoes have gone downhill recently.
    Posted By: http:// (17/06/2008 1:57:47 PM)
    Comment: I Love Hanks. It’s the best sunday breakfast in town. I keep coming back and everyone I’ve brought there agrees.
    Posted By: This place is way…. (17/06/2008 1:55:45 PM)
    Comment: overrated. What does it have? A view and nostalgia. The food sucks. The cottage fries are GREASY and always undercooked, even when you ask them to serve them crispy. Stopped going years ago.
    Posted By: Burgersnob (17/06/2008 1:47:10 PM)
    Comment: You people embarrass me. To say that Hank’s isn’t one of the best breakfast joints around is to announce that you just don’t really enjoy food that much. Stick to your IHOP and let the rest of us get a table just that much faster.
    Posted By: D (17/06/2008 1:22:48 PM)
    Comment: The best eggs benedict in town.
    Posted By: b (17/06/2008 1:20:26 PM)
    Comment: HA HA! I ate at Hank’s once. No No. I ordered food there once. My eggs benedict came back with a wad of hair on the muffin. Needless to say, that dish was cheap but highly unsatisfying. I’ll never go back there and find this recommendation laughable.
    Posted By: Laura and David (17/06/2008 12:48:57 PM)
    Comment: the best thing about hank’s WAS when it turned into Emil’s in the evening.
    Posted By: Megan (17/06/2008 12:33:09 PM)
    Comment: This place isn’t worth the MINIMUM 45 minute wait. The food just isn’t that great!

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