205 N. Shields Ave., 355-2282; 2616 Buford Road, 320-9700
Second Place: McLeans Restaurant
Third Place: Perly's Restaurant & Delicatessen
Consistency is the name of the game, says Katie Price, manager at Joe's Inn in the Fan for 12 years: "We have so many regulars. We know their faces and we know what they want for breakfast because a lot of people get the same thing every time they come in." The kitchen is so attuned to satisfying the preferences of its diners that it'll try out something as basic as a new wheat bread on a few longtime regulars to get their opinion before switching brands. As for its prolonged roost in the top spot, the only way Price sees that changing is if the restaurant fiddled with how it does breakfast — and that just isn't happening. Old-school, family-owned McLeans gets points for its early bird special for the pre-8 a.m. crowd while anyone who's stood in line at Perly's on weekend mornings knows it's well worth the wait.