DoNorth

Campus Corner Dining

Campus Corner serves a mean omelette with a side of warm hospitality.

(DoNorth/Taylor Rock)

 

 For a home-style meal away from home, Campus Corner is heavy competition for your mom’s made-from-scratch pancakes. Owner Sue Upton serves not only great omelets and coffee but a sense of family too.  

Don’t let the name fool you; the diner at 92 Bridge St. in Plattsburgh has customers of all ages, not just college students. Seated in 37 barstools or outdoor booths, you’ll find people from all corners of Plattsburgh and beyond. Campus Corner attracts its biggest crowd for breakfast, served until closing at 2 p.m. Upton says the most popular item is the “Lumberjack” — two eggs, a choice of pancakes or french toast, home fries, a choice of meat and toast. After breakfast, the homemade soup is a hot commodity. It’s made fresh every morning with flavors constantly changing: cheeseburger mac, steak and cheese, pasta figioli, Michigan soup and taco soup to name a few. The omelets are always a solid choice. Eggs fold in sautéed spinach and onions seamlessly, held together by a delightfully musty Swiss cheese. The side of toast comes with melting butter and the perfect crunch. And of course, there’s coffee. The Paul DeLima roast is a nice complement between bites. The body is light and the flavor well balanced, not needing much aid from cream or sugar. “It’s amazing,” waitress Tiarra Spencer says. “It brings the people in, really just the coffee alone.”  Upton treats customers like family. People who enter the diner don’t receive a scripted hello, but a warm and genuine welcome. Regulars often exchange jokes about specific life events as old friends do. Upton and her staff are clearly invested in the happiness of their customers. They even do valet parking for one of their most beloved regulars, Lou Murphy. “I love all these miserable people in here,” Murphy jokes from her barstool. With a spoonful of spuds she continues: “No, I like the girls in here a lot. They’re very, very good to me.” Upton laughs about the best part of running her own diner: she’s the boss.

“You get the satisfaction about everything that comes out of here,” she says. “I have college kids start here who have never worked before, and I get to see them grow and move on.”

She’s even taught a few how to mop. With only a couple waitresses and small kitchen staff working each day, operating a diner can be a great deal of sweat and tears. That said, Upton still finds time to make fun. Dared by customers not to sing along with the radio, she begins to recite the lyrics of Pure Prairie League’s “Aime.” At first, there are only hums in reciprocation. Shortly after, the entire diner joins in to finish the ballad. Whether you’re a local regular or a new customer, Campus Corner offers good company and a wholesome meal to satisfy a craving for breakfast with a side of family.

Issue 6: Winter/Spring

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