Damn, Damn, Damn It: Owner of Metro Diner Confirms Gaston Ave. Location Is Closing

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My cell phone is still packed with photos I took of my dad and son in front of the Preston Center Metro Grill on its final day of operations in August 2008. And now this? Teresa Gubbins breaks the news that the Gaston Avenue Metro, an institution since '68, is also about to close. I just got off the phone with owner Wayne Adams, whose dad James bought the place when Wayne was 9, and he confirms: The end is near. End of March, to be precise.

Last I talked to Wayne was when we were sitting at the Preston Center counter on August 21, 2008. He told me then that as much as it hurt to bid farewell to that location, the Gaston Ave. spot -- which was already an operating eatery when his dad bought it -- was "my baby." This afternoon he told me: "It's still my baby." But he's sold the property -- to Baylor, Teresa notes. Wayne says he doesn't want to get into specifics till we sit down and have a long talk later this week for a follow-up I'll post on City of Ate. All he'll say are: "There are a lot of circumstances" leading to this sad bit of news, which, as Teresa notes, also includes the moving of The Petal Pusher flower shop next door.

Wayne did say he told the employees only yesterday about the closing, and that he hopes to do on Gaston what he did at Preston Center -- turn the adios into "a positive closing ... a celebration." (At Preston Center, during the week of closing you could get burgers and biscuits at '63 prices.) Still, I hate to see this happen: My grandfather started taking me there when I was a wee lad, and God knows how many cigarettes and cups of coffee I consumed at the Metro way back when it had the best jukebox in town, especially after Deep Ellum clubs closed at 2 in the a.m. How many best-ofs did we give this place? A million, looks like.


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53 comments
Daniel Burke
Daniel Burke

Awesome. Now DFW's goal of offering only large chain restaurants is another step closer. We'll be just like Times Square in no time, except without the revenue.

holman
holman

The Lil Hobo breakfast can't be touched anywhere in town.

holman
holman

Baylor is expanding to compete with Parkland. Baylor and the City are widening 2nd Ave from the I-30 interchange to the emergency room for better access. Baylor has bought (and is buying) Depp Ellum tracts from Earl Owens west several blocks. Medical real estate is the only commercial real estate alive in the nation other than Washington DC, where the Fed has been expanding dramatically. The new Healthcare Act is a boon to med real estate. Baylor is about complete on its 1st phase of the $450 million cancer center. Baylor dropped the Earl Owens contract due (reportedly) to environmental concerns. They subsequently bought a block to the west. They apy in the $40/SF range to th land on the big stuff. No telling what the paid for the Diner tract or the flower shop tract. They would be considered holdouts on a larger block up. Now, if they don't have an immediate need for those tracts, they might consider leasing the improvements on a short term lease to continue the great diner that Baylor people hang out at. But no doubt they would only see a legal liability.

Bean the Cook
Bean the Cook

Hance, I think that was one of Sully's old dates from mistral in the photo.

5mxmike
5mxmike

"Bean, you got any chops?" " You know dat right" Man I will miss that place!!!

Daniel
Daniel

In addition to with numerous besotted episodes at the Metro, I actually ate there the day my son was born across the street. I hadn't eaten for more than 24 hours, the boy was happy and healthy, his mom was doing just fine and I was on Cloud 9. I had a 2x4.

Lee
Lee

Some day, everything will be a hospital or medical office, pharmacy, bank branch or Subway.

joel
joel

After a long shift bartending in Deep Ellum, I ran into Slash and Duff McKagen at Metro Diner after a Velvet Revolver show. Good times. I really miss "Ma" Donna waiting tables and "Dad" Dan on the grill....although they left Metro years ago......I'll miss this place.

scott
scott

At least we have Barbec's.

Duane Smith
Duane Smith

Damn this SUCKS. I've been eating at Metro for 15+ years, and particularly in the past 8-ish years since I moved to East Dallas, like, several times a month. Metro Diner has been a fixture in my life. Crap, where else am I gonna get that much butter in a single meal? <tears></tears>

Redbloodclub
Redbloodclub

SUUUUUKKKK!!Master burger, tasty salad.....

Gregory Gammill
Gregory Gammill

I ate at the one in Oak Cliff several months ago. I ordered a chicken fried steak and was served something that obviously thawed out when they threw it in the deep fryer. I'll never go back. Norma's is okay but it's nothing special. I wish there was a Dixie House close.

LakeWWWooder
LakeWWWooder

No more Dan's Lakewood Cafe or Brownie's...where ya gonna go at 3 am?

Metro actually made me like grits!

Years ago when my nephew was being born the waitress told us to go back over to Baylor and just tell my sister to "BEAR DOWN".

Sausage
Sausage

anyone up for burning down baylor? because I'm that serious about being pissed about metro going away. this is not ******* cool.

Jack E. Jett
Jack E. Jett

Major bummer. It was a great pit stop if you had to go to Baylor for any reason. I will miss the grease.

Taco Sense
Taco Sense

So, so upsetting. I grew up in the north suburbs, and when I finally got my license, the first thing I did was drive myself into Dallas, visit Good Records and eat lunch at Metro. Haven't stopped going since. I'll just have to make sure to get all my memories on camera for the duration of their time open.

Love you Metro, wish it wasn't so.

AJZ
AJZ

(Surely it's "Petal Pusher" with a T--a flower pun--no?)

OED_Denizen
OED_Denizen

If you want to know how Baylor has REALLY eaten the history around it, check out some Sanborn Fire Insurance maps from 1922. There used to be a lot of very large beautiful mansions on Junius, Victor and Worth on what is now called the Baylor Campus!

Mare
Mare

The jukebox wasn't working when my friend and I made our annual visit to Metro on Christmas night this year. Seemed to foreshadow this awful news.

Tomatodallas
Tomatodallas

I worked at Baylor from 1973 to 1984 & ate many a great old-fashioned cheeseburger & French Fries at the Metro. Their coffee was enough to keep me awake & jazzed all day! It was a step up from the Baylor Cafeteria in those days which was about six steps below bus station food.Jimmy who owned the floral shop ate there a lot too. He was one of my favorite people. Poor guy was done in by someone he had befriended in his mansion on Swiss. So much property has been bought by Baylor as they keep expanding. Ah Dallas business-folk, how you do consume history!

Dallas Diner
Dallas Diner

About ten years ago our office went there for a birthday lunch; everybody got sick afterwards. Haven't been back since then. We'll always have Norma's.

MattL1
MattL1

"How many best-ofs did we give this place? A million, looks like."

Deserved every last one of them. In hindsight, I should have gone there more, seeing as it is one of the only true diners within walking distance of my apartment.

Daniel
Daniel

This comes as a steel-toed kick to the kidney. Not since the demise of Lucas B&B has such darkness descended upon Dallas.

G_David
G_David

Honestly, this is a lot more painful in theory than it will be for me in reality, I've soaked up a lot of alcohol with their breakfasts and burgers in my day, but it's been years since I've been there. For one thing, I almost never have cash. And for another, Taco Joint, Buzzbrews, El Jordan and Allgood have pretty much shoved them out of the rotation.

By the way, how much do you think business will drop at the Jack and Jane Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital directly across the street when the Metro closes?

cp
cp

I'll never forget one 3am grease run and we wanted some pie, the waitress said, "We aint got no pies, they're all froze."

Andy Nold
Andy Nold

Suck. Where can I go now to abuse my gallbladder?

All Knowing TV Guy
All Knowing TV Guy

This wouldn't fly in Austin. Eff you Dallas for destroying your own history and businesses unique to you.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

Chris, that ran in one of our best-of issues years ago. I used to have a framed copy somewhere.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Holy crap! That sucks man, I always enjoyed a greasy late night breakfast there, be it in my youth or now, as I live in the neighborhood..I wonder if baylor is also trying to buy the flower shop next door as well??

Daniel
Daniel

strike the fourth word

Kenneth
Kenneth

Oh the master burger was so good. I'm really gonna muss the metro.

G_David
G_David

I live down the street from the Dixie House. Sadly, my last meal there tasted a lot like your Metro diner experience. Go to the Allgood Cafe. They claim the world's best chicken fried steak. And like somebody once said, it ain't bragging if it's true.

Scott Dorn
Scott Dorn

Yes I ate at the lakewood cafe twice wasnt too bad. I mis the old place never ate at metro well I guess I will be eating there tonight camera in hand. I have photographing dallas for the last 16 and Dallas is showing once again our history phyiscally means nothing. All the local hang outs are being eracated for bigger name building where you matter to who cares Alamo motel is gone, Europeon crossroads will gone this year, Olla Podrida gone Dr Pepper on mockingbird gone Lakewood cafe gone along with many others notable structures. enjoy it while we have it .

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

Damn right. Seeing as how I wrote most of 'em. Because till we moved to Oak Lawn, I used to eat lunch there fairly regularly. Never had the experience described below, however.

Bill Holston
Bill Holston

you had to bring up Lucas B&B? So, why don't you talk about Strictly Taboo? Well, I guess I did.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

I hadn't been there for, oh, a year or so till recently. But we were driving past, and the boy -- who, for a 7-year-old, has powerfully strong memories of Saturday morning breakfasts at the Preston Center location -- wanted to go in. I was only too happy to. And now we have plans for this Saturday morning as well. Much as I like the Oak Cliff outpost -- where you'll find Beverly, who kept watch at Preston Center -- for me, Gaston Ave. was once a second home.

2145551212
2145551212

When was the last time you stopped by Las Manitas Avenue Cafe in Austin?

Guest
Guest

Thats right nothing ever changes in Austin because its so cool that its actually a form of payment just present your coolness at the bank window and pick up your cash

Shut up and go there

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

I agree with ya man, its a sad day for all around here...it'll probably become some sort of facility for baylor, which stinks :(

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Was that in a year that Dallas wasn't in the top 10 for rudest cities in america?? ;)

Bill Holston
Bill Holston

Teresa's article says yes, which is a drag too.

G_David
G_David

The only thing "notable" about European Crossroads was how ugly it was, other than a terrible occupancy rate. Might have had something to do with everything being behind a huge wall. But your point about Dallas and history is quite valid.

CrackerDaddy
CrackerDaddy

That was a dark day indeed when Strictly taboo went away.

G_David
G_David

If I can talk the significant other into it, I'll look for ya' there. She works at Baylor yet refuses to step foot in there. But she owes me big for a trip to Spiral Diner after which I didn't leave the bathroom for 36 hours. Won't tell you which end was afflicted, but Corby wouldn't like it.

Robert Wilonsky
Robert Wilonsky

I've added that to the piece. Intended to initially, but too overcome with grief.

Chris Danger
Chris Danger

Wilonsky, nice selection of pic BTW, I know the gal via twitter, shes a pretty cool lady man...

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