Thursday, January 10, 2008

Meet You at the Diner!

As a native Long Islander, I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur of the American diner. In fact, I truly love them. I grew up with a diner on every corner. After every high school evening out, we headed to the local diner. God knows we were tired and hungry from the hours of aimlessly driving around. It was a who's who of the Wantagh Social Scene. Fast forward 10 years and I am a girl about Philly, in constant search of the perfect diner.

Living in Center City, I find my diner options are slim. While I know that Philly has some of the best restaurants around, sometimes a girl just needs a greasy meal. Rittenhouse Square's Little Pete's (219 South 17th Street) is tiny, but it gets props for being open 24 hours, making drunken nights all the better. University City's Philly Diner (3925 Walnut Street) may be the worst diner I've ever visited. Packed with Penn kids and locals, I excitedly ordered a platter of cheese fries. Imagine my disappointment when they served me a small portion of microwaved American Cheese fries. I think I left in tears. Do not waste your time at this place under any circumstance.
The newly vamped, Northern Liberties hot spot Silk City Diner (435 Spring Garden Street) is too trendy to be a diner in my expert opinion. It is delicious but not super cheap. They offer plenty of fancy drinks, making this an ideal place for a girl's night out. South Philly's famed Penrose Diner (2016 Penrose Avenue) has some of the most spectacular people watching that you could ever imagine. A Friday night in the heart of South Philly will provide hours of conversation for your table.
Finally, my top rated diner choice is Bella Vista's Morning Glory Diner (735 South 10th Street). The hours are terrible and the servers aren't overly friendly, but it is a wonderful brunch spot if you can withstand a bit of a wait. Be sure to try the homemade ketchup.
Support diners- an American institution. Ben Franklin would have wanted it that way.

1 comment:

PiFry said...

I share your diner dismay. You think the Philly Diner is bad, try the Midtown III in the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood. The Philly Diner on Penn's campus starts to look like quite the bargain in comparison.

Though it pains me as a lifelong Philadelphian to say this, the best diner food in the area is in New Jersey. I guess since Philly has better food in every single other category imaginable, it's fair to let New Jersey have something...