Hav a Bite Diner, Metamora, Indiana

We are fortunate enough to spend quite a bit of time in and around Metamora, Indiana throughout the year, and during our trek up and down Highway 52, we’ve passed the Hav a Bite restaurant several times. I’ve noticed that their sign proudly proclaims “hand breaded tenderloins” as one of their specialities, so, finding ourselves there at lunchtime, I knew that a review was in order.

The Hav a Bite is a wonderfully quaint diner, and the walls are nicely decorated with art depicting Metamora’s past. There is a nice mix of sketches and photos, and I took a moment to wander around just soaking in the atmosphere. Although Metamora is mostly known as a tourist town  (at least that’s my perception), this certainly seems to be the place that the locals eat. That’s always a good sign.  People were in there, seated in small groups, discussing everything from religion to politics to weather to quilting…it was really nice to set and just soak in the atmosphere of a small town diner.

We took a look at the menu, and were quite surprised at the prices.  A breaded tenderloin sandwich was $3.50, the jumbo, $5.00. Add a couple of bucks and you can make it a platter, with cole slaw and fries (or another side).  It was certainly reasonable enough.

When it came time to order, I told the waitress that I wanted the jumbo platter.  She said  “Are you SURE?  It’s a BIG sandwich…”.   I replied  “Yes…I’m sure”.


Well, as you can see from the photo…it IS indeed a big sandwich.  Perhaps the largest I’ve ever encountered.  And, as you can see, it truly is hand breaded. And, as is my preference, it’s not only big, but it’s thick, also.  (I am resisting the urge to add “That’s what she said” here). I could go on and on about this sandwich, but I’ll just say this.  The meat is tender, moist, and juicy, and the breading is outstanding. The breading even has just the slightest hint of a “kick” to it.  Man, oh man, this is one good sandwich. This one goes in the 5 out of 5 bites hall of fame, and it’s well worth the drive, no matter where you’re coming from.

And, I hate to admit it….but I couldn’t finish it.  Next time, I’ll get the regular sized.

The sandwich was dressed as I ordered, our drinks were kept topped off, and the staff was friendly and gracious.

Holly ordered a cheeseburger and her comment was  “You can sure tell it’s homemade”…no fast food burgers here!

We both ordered platter, which included cole slaw, and we both agree, it’s among the best…if not THE best…cole slaw we’ve ever had. However…we were less than impressed with the french fries.  We’ll choose another side next time…and, yes, there WILL be a next time.  The Hav A Bite has certainly earned our repeat business.

The Hav A Bite is located at 19121 US Highway 52 in Metamora, Indiana.  I was unable to locate a web page for them.


6 thoughts on “Hav a Bite Diner, Metamora, Indiana

  1. I do the bacon cheeseburger myself. They do a great job with brussel sprouts when they have them as a side. And anytime they have the roast pork special you will not walk away hungry. Some folk like their fried chicken better than the more “famous” establishment in the vicinity. And I doubt very much that you’ll ever find a website for the Hav a Bite. 🙂

  2. Funny you just posted this. The wife and I drove out that way on Labor Day and I checked here to see if you had posted reviews of any tenderloins in the area. We passed this place and decided to turn around and go back there for lunch, mainly because of the “hand breaded tenderloins” bit on the sign. I wasn’t disappointed. I didn’t go for the jumbo, and the smaller size was plenty for me. I didn’t get the platter but I did get the onion rings, and they were pretty darn good.

    As for the sandwich, it was tasty. I like a thicker cut of meat, so this was right up my alley. The breading was a little different than most, nice and peppery, kind of reminded me of the Steer In in Indy. Overall, I’d give it a 4 out of 5.


  3. Sounds like another trip to Metamora is in order (not that anyone NEEDS additional reasons to go to Metamora!). Great blog, Rick!

  4. Metamora was a magical place as a kid visiting long ago – been there later rafting but may have to make a return visit and eat here!

  5. We ate lunch here Saturday on our way to Cincinnati – ordered the smaller size tenderloin platter with onion rings – they were great. My husband said fries were just ok. A man near us was eating a cheese burger that looked “wonderful”! Being from NW IN, we were surprised to pay extra for lettuce/tomato on the sandwich.We will not drive out of our way again as every table around us had people smoking which ruined the taste of our food.

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