Stafford Diner

Stafford Diner (Manahawkin)

Recently my husband and I decided to try the Stafford Diner.  A few friends live around there, and I drove by on my way to Mustache Bills Diner.  The outside is retro, and it fits the “diner look.”

Image via Stafford Diner Website
Image via Stafford Diner Website

Stafford Diner Atmosphere: A
The outside of the Stafford Diner is attractive.  It’s a shiny metallic building.  The reason I added the Stafford Diner to my list was that the exterior was so appealing.

stafford diner 1

The inside is typical of a diner.  It is a long building with a bar, plenty of booths and plush seating.  It meets the stereotype of a diner.

Stafford Diner Service: F
The service of the Stafford Diner was a turn off for me.  The waitress brought drinks than disappeared for extended periods.  It took 15 minutes just to order food.  Our food took 40 minutes to come out and when the order was mistaken, another 15 for new food.  It was disappointing.  Sometimes people have bad days. However, the service at the Stafford Diner was one of the worst I’ve had.

Stafford Diner Coffee: B
The coffee at the Stafford Diner was good but nothing unusual or unique. It wasn’t good or bad, and I’m indifferent about it.

Stafford diner coffee

Stafford Diner Food: B
The Stafford Diner Menu is enormous.  The menu is about ten pages long and serves everything.  They seem to focus more on seafood which makes sense since it’s located near the shore. I did notice, however, limited options on appetizers as well as desserts.  They had plenty of entrees, but not a lot of appetizers, and I was hungry.

A few fun Stafford Diner Breakfast menu options:

  • slices of french toast with choice of homefries potatoes
  • Canadian bacon and two poached eggs
  • English muffin layered with Canadian bacon
  • eggs any style & two buttermilk pancakes
  • Homemade hollandaise sauce and home fries

stafford diner appetizer

I ordered the trio appetizer because I was starving.  It came with two mushrooms, two shrimp and two clams all stuffed with crab meat.  I’m not sure what I was expecting, but it was a big pile of fried crab meat.  It tasted and appeared as if it came from the frozen food aisle. The butter made it decent, but it wasn’t what I was expecting.  For nearly $10, I would not order it again.

I ordered the stuffed shells.  After 45 minutes of waiting for the food, they initially brought the wrong dish over. After a total of an hour waiting to eat, I finally chowed down.  I was pleasantly surprised by how well the marinara sauce was seasoned.  The shells were good, and the sauce was tasty too.  It was filling as well.

stafford diner baked shells

Stafford Diner Cost: $$
The meal itself was only $10, but the app was $9.50.  My meal with the coffee cost was $22.50.  It was pricy for the appetizer, but the entree was inexpensive.  Next time I won’t order the app.

Summary/Would I come back to the Stafford Diner?
The Stafford Diner is an easy stop before getting on the Garden State Parkway, but it’s not my favorite diner.

Atmosphere: A
Service: F
Coffee: B
Food: B
Cost: $8-15
Overall: C

You can see all of the diner reviews here.

Questions for you:
What’s the longest you’ve waited for food?
Do you like marinara sauce or white sauce with pasta?

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  1. bad service is such a turn off, especially when you are hungry! I love a good marinara sauce! You reminded me that the diner had terrific chicken parm – which is weird when I think about it because why order chicken parm at a diner when you can go to an Italian restaurant but it was so good it was worth it!

  2. I don’t know that I’ve ever waited that long for food! Yikes!

  3. The outside of the diner looks so cool! It’s a shame the service was so poor! I guess you win some and you lose some!

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