Petaluma is a great place for breakfast even though New Marvins* is gone. Recently I tried Hallies Diner in downtown Petaluma. With cheerful young servers clad in t-shirts and jeans, counter seating, red vinyl-clad booths, and a couple tables on the sidewalk, the blues on the airwaves, and decorated with black and white photographs, this has the feeling of a modern diner without retro pretensions.
From habit, I reached under the counter for a hook to hang my purse. While most times this customer convenience has been overlooked and I only find spent gum, there was a hook at my seat, and also on the ends of each booth. Customers around me were enjoying dewy-fresh salads, soup of the day, bountiful breakfast platters, or piled-high sandwiches with lots of crisp greenery. The unselfconscious menu has some Latin touches and hits the standards as well.
Breakfast is served all day. I ordered the Cajun sausage, two eggs, and corncakes with real maple syrup. The eggs-over-easy were perfection, cooked so gently that the yolks were runny and barely thickened and the whites were like custard with nary a bubble or toughened brown edge. The eggs were so rich and fresh I learned that they were locally sourced, as are most of the ingredients here. Three large fluffy corncakes were toasty brown and flecked with orange peel. The maple syrup was served warm. The split and grilled sausage was deftly spiced with medium heat and lots of flavor. Fresh lemonade is house-made. Its presweetened and a little too sugary for my taste. However, my glass was repeatedly topped up. My tab with tax and tip was $12.50.
Open daily, 7am to 3pm
* Original Marvins aka Marvins on the Boulevard is still open.