A breakfast for champions at Lancer's Diner.EXPAND
A breakfast for champions at Lancer's Diner.
Mark Antonation

100 Favorite Dishes: Chicken-Fried Steak Breakfast at Lancer's Diner

No 18: Chicken-Fried Steak and Eggs at Lancer's Diner
The word "diner" has lost some of its impact over the years as fancy-pants chefs have co-opted the word and attached eye-popping price tags to overwrought renditions of simple food that apron-wearing cooks named Bill or Alice or Joe perfected decades ago.
But at Lancer's Diner, which opened last summer at the corner of South Federal Boulevard and West Evans Avenue, "diner" means what most of us expect: cheap, filling and scratch-made. The chicken-fried steak and eggs covers all three of those — and then some.

We'll start with cheap: A penny shy of seven bucks lands you your chicken-fried steak, two eggs, toast or pancakes, and a side of country potatoes, grits, fruit or other breakfasty options. And size? The photo above doesn't lie. If you choose pancakes, you get three big ones, not just a solo flapjack, and many folks would consider that side of grits a complete breakfast on its own. The main attraction is an ample slab of beef jacketed in a crunchy coating and drowned in a generous ladleful of housemade country gravy studded with bits of sausage. Eggs come cooked exactly the way you like them, so be specific; sunny-side up means your yolks will run like liquid sunshine.

Lancer's, named for the mascot of Lincoln High School just across the street, may be too new to evoke the timeworn roadhouses and chuckwagons that dot small-town America like pats of butter on a vast pancake, but the cheery service, strong coffee and big breakfasts served all day (until the joint closes at 9 p.m. most nights) — not to mention the stream of locals stopping in to refuel — make this diner an instant classic.

Hungry for more? All of the dishes in our 2016 countdown are linked below.

No. 100: Masala Beef at Biju's Little Curry Shop
No. 99: Bacon Shrimp and Grits at Bacon Social House
No. 98: Porchetta and Kimchi Sandwich at Brider
No. 97: Squab-and-Sunchoke Tortellini at Abejas
No. 96: Housemade Burrata at Viand
No. 95: Schweinshaxe at Rhein Haus
No. 94 Kimchi Jeon at Seoul BBQ
No. 93: Zuppa Pomodoro at Parisi Italian Market & Deli
No. 92: The Ocean Salad at Sushi-Rama
No. 91: The Signature Bowl from Churn & Burn
No. 90: Green Chorizo at Los Compadres
No. 89: The Diavola Calzone at Pino's Neighborhood Pizzeria
No. 88: Biscuits and Green Chile at the Noshery
No. 87: Chirashi at Izu Sushi
No. 86: Brisket and Ribs at GQue Championship BBQ
No. 85: The Tornado at the Chowder Room
No. 84: Korean Fried Chicken Wings at Yong Gung
No. 83: A Meatball Hero at Lil' Ricci's New York Pizzeria
No. 82: Shakshuka at Stowaway Coffee + Kitchen
No. 81: Late-Night Ramen at Brazen
No. 80: Potato Tacos at El Tejado
No. 79: Corned Beef Heart at theWay Back
No. 78: The Fried Bologna Sandwich at Snarfburger
No. 77: Sweet Corn Mezzaluna at Bar Dough
No. 76: Duck Confit at Table 6
No. 75: Croque Monsieur at Fire
No. 74: Tahini Cookies at the Preservery
No. 73: The Alferd Packer Salad at MAD Greens
No. 72: The Tuna Poke Bowl at Ohana Island Kitchen
No. 71: Mini Chile Rellenos at La Loma
No. 70: The Combination Banh Mi at Vinh Xuong Bakery
No. 69: The Falafel Waffle at Moxie Eatery
No. 68: Korean Fried Duck Wings at Chow Urban Grill
No. 67:  Spaghetti Alla Carbonara at Spatola
No. 66: The Classic Burger from Skirted Heifer
No. 65: The Chicken Salad Stuffed Avocado at Poppies
No. 64: Super Pass Key Special at Pass Key
No. 63: How the West Was Won at Dozens Restaurant
No. 62: Manzo With Polenta at Spuntino
No. 61: P & S Snack Mix at the Pig & the Sprout
No. 59-60: Sloppers at Gray's Coors Tavern and Diego's
No. 58: Potstickers at Zoe Ma Ma
No. 57: Griddle Cooked Bullfrog at Yum Yum Spice
No. 56: Macaroni and Cheese at Work & Class
No. 55: Lobster, Egg and Caviar Bruschetta at Bar Fausto
No. 54: Orecchiette at Coperta
No. 53: Cheese Steak at Steuben's Food Service
No. 52: PB&B Acai Bowl at ProsperOats
No. 51: Gold Miner's Breakfast at River and Woods
No. 50: Bison Pastrami at To The Wind Bistro
No. 49: Spicy Beef Hot Pot at Bronze Empire
No. 48: Brad's Neo Gyro at Avelina
No. 47: The Egg and Croissant Sandwich at La Fillette Bakery
No. 46: Smoked Brisket Stroganoff Pot Pie From Humble Pie and Kitchen Table
No. 45: Hisbiscus-Flower Tacos at Comal
No. 44: The Juicy Lucy at the Midwestern Saloon
No. 43: Italian combo #2 at Carbone's
No. 42: Huevos Rancheros at Las Potrancas
No. 41: The Roti Taco at Mister Tuna
No. 40: Mile High Nachos at Racines
No. 39: Classic Rooster at Royal Rooster
No. 38: Toomkha Soup at US Thai Cafe
No. 37: Smoked Lamb Shank at Roaming Buffalo Bar-B-Que
No. 36: Banh Mi Tacos at Vital Root
No. 35: Barbecue Sandwiches at Globe Hall
No. 34: Ebelskivers at Three Little Griddles
No. 33: Bagna Cauda Broccoli Rabe at Dio Mio Handmade Pasta
No. 32: Flavorsome Ramen at Sera's Ramen Enclave
No. 31: Chicken Tenders at the Fainting Goat
No. 30: Sesame Chicken at Red Dragon
No. 29-28: Last Great Lunch of 2016, First Great Plate of 2017
No. 27: Rocky Mountain Oysters at Lulu's Inn
No. 26: The Shawarma Sandwich at Edri's International Market
No. 25: Panuchos at Que Bueno Suerte
No. 24: Fish and Chips at Public School 303
No. 23: The Sloppy Joe at Thunderbird Imperial Lounge
No. 22: Empanadas at Lazo Empanadas
No. 21: Fried Chicken Banh Mi at the Post Chicken & Beer
No. 20: All You Can Eat at Guadalajara Mexican Buffet
No. 19: The Breakfast Sandwich at Stella's on 16th

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