The pancake professionals at Hanover Pancake House have been serving up an energizing menu of breakfast and lunch dishes since 1969. Like coaches prepping their star players, chefs dunk the cinnamon-roll french toast in an egg bath before grilling and serving it with four slices of crispy bacon ($6.99). Customers can tap into wells of personal creativity to design their own pancakes ($3.25–$5.99) with toppings such as strawberries, mixed berries, and bananas. The spinach, bacon, and tomato eggs benedict buttresses two poached eggs and creamy hollandaise sauce with toasted english muffins ($7.49), and an array of omelets ($5.25–$7.99) combines two country fresh eggs and toast.
Serving savory subs since 1956, the friendly bread bookenders at Jersey Mike’s employ fresh ingredients to gift diners with an extensive menu of handheld eats assembled directly before eager mouths. Sink your ivories into cold subs such as the Jersey Shore's Favorite, where generous slices of provolone, ham, and cappacuolo arrive layered with onions, lettuce, tomatoes, vinegar, and a sprinkling of oil and spices ($4.29–$8.95, depending on size). Chilly diners dissatisfied with standard whole-wheat sleeping bags can warm up next to hot subs such as the Big Kahuna Cheese Steak ($6.95/reg, $10.75/giant) or the chicken parm's infusion of melted provolone, tomato sauce, and parmesan ($6.25/reg, $9.75/giant). Diners seeking munchables as light as a CGI feather can sample the fresh-tossed salad ($3.99) or tuna salad ($6.25). The friendly sandwich sculptors will also happily customize any 'wich to your whims, offering a host of vegetarian options or the utensil-friendly Sub in a Tub, which mixes the ingredients in a bowl sans bread.
Perhaps counterintuitively, The Burger Stand is not a zone for beef-patty purists. The cooks play with tradition by substituting farm-raised salmon and several vegetarian options, such as falafel and black beans, for the classic meat. Of course the menu features plenty of beef burgers alongside its innovations, though it dresses them in unexpected finery. The Fire burger, for example, sports avocado and a sizzling habanero-cactus jam. Not even the fries are spared the gourmet treatment—The Burger Stand prepares seven types of potato sides, from truffle to duck-fat variants. And all of this comes with a good selection of draft beer from Free State, Boulevard, and other microbreweries.
Lawrence.com recognized the restaurant's specialty with a Best Burger award in 2011 and 2012. Its reach has since extended to a second location in Topeka, where ping-pong, pool, and foosball tables offer safe alternatives to traditional dinnertime games of capture-the-tablecloth. Themed nights welcome guests to sing karaoke and play retro video games such as Star Fox and Super Mario Kart.
Jason’s Deli, which Parents magazine named one of the 10 Best Family Restaurants in America in 2011, has served up an extensive menu of healthy, fresh, and organic deli fare for 35 years. After hearty cups of southwest chicken chili ($3.79/cup) whet appetites, the spinach-veggie wrap ends any take with a cinematic array of mushrooms, organic spinach, and sprouts wrapped in an organic wheat shell played by Robert Redford ($5.99). Chicken paninis smother natural grilled chicken with provolone cheese, pine nuts, and organic spinach between slices of olive-oil-basted french bread ($6.79). For dessert, try a fresh-baked cranberry-walnut-oatmeal cookie ($0.99) or a delectable slice of carrot cake ($2.99) as fluffy and sweet as a punctured teddy bear oozing grape jelly.
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