December 2, 2022

Gio’s Pancake House opens in Mishawaka with American and Mexican breakfast and lunch options


Earlier this year, the owners of Lincolnway Cafe made the decision to close the breakfast restaurant and merge it with their other restaurant, the Yellow Cat Cafe in South Bend. The Mishawaka restaurant closed at 2524 Lincoln Way W. on January 13, and a few weeks later a small, colorful handwritten poster popped up in the window and gave a glimpse of what was to come.

“Gio is coming soon,” he said.

Gio’s Pancake House opened on April 3 and offers breakfast and lunch options including omelets, fruit pancakes, cookies and gravy, eggs, fried steaks, and cheeseburgers. Wood panels cover the majority of the small restaurant, but a chalkboard wall displays daily specials, while occasionally featuring an inspirational Buddha quote and colorful flowers.

“It took them a few months to open, but once they did, it’s really good,” customer Kenny Gean said Tuesday morning. “You get a lot of food here for the price.”

Gean was a regular at Lincolnway Cafe and said he has become a repeat customer at Gio’s, visiting about two to three times a week. He prefers breakfast food to any other, he said, and usually orders two eggs rather than medium, two sausages, two cookies, and hash browns with ketchup.

“All for around $ 6.50,” he said. “And coffee is included in that.”

The man behind the new restaurant is Eulogio Dominguez, who has a history of working in breakfast joints. In fact, you could say it’s in his blood. Dominguez’s family own and work at a variety of area restaurants such as Bendix Restaurant along Western Avenue and Pedro’s Family Restaurant on Portage Avenue, both in South Bend.

“I started working about 25 years ago occupying tables and as a dishwasher,” said Dominguez, as he gently smashed eggs against the hotplate and put them in a buttered pan. “And I didn’t like it, so I tried the cooking and it worked.”

In addition to the traditional American breakfast and lunch options, the restaurant also offers Mexican dishes like huevos a la Mexicana, enchiladas verdes o rojos, pollo fajitas, tacos carne asada with corn tortillas topped with cilantro. and onions and bistec ranchero. All accompanied by a choice of green or red salsa. These dishes, Dominguez said, are his favorite dishes.

“My specialty is breakfast, so things like omelets and pans. But I really like making Mexican dishes like huevos a la Mexicana, chilaquiles and fajitas, ”said Dominguez. “I thought about incorporating Mexican dishes and thought why not. They are a little harder to do but it’s okay. … I like what I do.”

The new restaurant is open Monday to Thursday from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Sunday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Did you hear?

The Baker & Rose downtown café is moving from its current location in the Emporium building. Owner Kevin Lawler said the kitchen space is getting too small, so the cafe will be moving to a larger location in downtown South Bend. He is not disclosing the exact location at this time, but has said he will make an announcement in the coming weeks. The cafe will remain in the Emporium building with its usual hours until Friday. … This Saturday, Round Barn Winery, Distillery and Brewery will be hosting a sangria party at 10983 Hills Road in Baroda to showcase their new canned red sangria wine and Crantini drinks. The event will feature live music, food trucks and sangria sorbet. The event starts at 11 a.m. and costs $ 5. … McDonald’s at 52665 Indiana 933 in Roseland will be hosting two reopening events after major renovations. In addition to other improvements, the restaurant now has several auto-ordering touchscreen kiosks in the lobby that allow customers to order food. The two inaugural events take place today at 11 am and on May 8 at 11 am… Moser’s Austrian Café at 201 E Michigan St. in New Carlisle is temporarily closed. The owner is on sick leave and has said it is expected to reopen in a few weeks.

Eulogio Dominguez is preparing an appetizer at Gio's Pancake House.  Dominguez owns the restaurant and is the main chef.
Maria Carillo takes a breakfast order Monday at Gio's Pancake House in Mishawaka.
Gio's Pancake House was active Monday afternoon.  The new restaurant opened on April 3 and offers American breakfast and lunch options, as well as Mexican dishes.
South Bend Tribune Market Basket columnist Mary pictured