With its big booths, big menu and big heart, the Bluebonnet Diner, going strong since 1950, is an institution the recession just can't beat down. As second-generation owner James Greco told the "Advocate," "We're always busy. The regulars keep coming in regardless of the times." Besides its reliable selection of plate dinners and burgers, the sides here are scrumptious (try their stellar fried eggplant), and they offer hard-to-find items right out of your great-grandmother's kitchen, like grapenut, bread, tapioca and rice puddings.
1st place, Late-night dining