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Key City Diner (Phillipsburg)

Key City Diner (Phillipsburg)

Key City Diner (Phillipsburg)

Recently I went to the Key City Diner in Phillipsburg.  It came highly recommended so when the opportunity presented itself; I drove a bit out of my way to go.

I arrived at the Key City Diner around 5 pm.  It wasn’t too crowded, and there was plenty of seating.

Key City Diner Atmosphere: A
You can’t miss the Key City Diner.  When driving by, there is a giant Key Sign, and it looks like a stereotypical diner.  It’s a big metallic, shiny, diner and is everything you picture in a diner.  If you’re looking to bring friends to a picture-perfect NJ diner, this is your spot.

Key City diner phillipsburg

The inside feels as if you stepped into a time machine when diners were created.  Interestingly enough, there was also a decently sized salad bar too, which is something many now lack.

Key City Diner Service: B
The waitress at the Key City Diner was a bit awkward and either new or not comfortable.  She did refill our beverages, and the food came out quickly, but every interaction was awkward.

For instance, I ordered a beef gyro, and she miscorrected me of how to pronounce gyro.  Then later, she pronounced it a different way: not a big deal, just many small awkward interactions.

Key City Diner Coffee: B
There was nothing unusual or unique about the coffee, but it wasn’t bad either.  The waitress brewed it hot and kept it refilled.

Key City diner phillipsburg

Key City Diner Food: B
The Key City Diner menu has everything you could picture in a diner.  There is breakfast all day, multiple dinner meals, salads, and seafood.  As I mentioned, it also has a salad bar too.

Key City diner phillipsburg

I opted for a beef Gyro with a Caesar salad. The gyro itself was good and had plenty of beef.  It came with fries which they gave me an entire plate.  The Caesar salad was filled, and I appreciated they already added the dressing.

Cost: $
For my gyro, salad, and coffee, the cost was $12.

Overall Summary/Would I come back to the Key City Diner?
I enjoyed the Key City Diner, and if I’m back in the area, I will come back.  The Key City Diner is above average, and in the middle of diners, I’ve been too

Atmosphere: A
Service: B
Coffee: B
Food: B
Cost: $8-$20
Overall: B

See More Diner Reviews Here

Questions for you:
What’s your favorite type of salad?
What is the coolest restaurant sign you’ve seen?

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Cosmic Diner (NYC)

Cosmic Diner (NYC)

While in New York City, I wanted to try a new diner.  As luck would have if, we ended up at two.  The first we went too was the Cosmic Diner.  We walked right by it, and we were hungry, so we stopped. One great aspect about the Cosmic Diner is that its open 24-7.  Surprisingly, many diners are not!

Image via Cosmic Diner website.


cosmic diner NYC

Cosmic Diner Atmosphere: A
For a tiny diner, it has everything a diner needs.  There are plenty of booths, tables, and a small bar located in the back. Even though the Cosmic Diner is small, you had space and weren’t sitting on top of anyone.

Cosmic Diner Coffee: A 
The coffee at the Cosmic Diner was brewed hot and fresh, and I have no complaints.  cosmic diner NYC

Cosmic Diner Service: B
Despite not being busy, our waitress wasn’t present too much.  We weren’t sure where she kept going. It wasn’t the best service, but she was never rude to us.  We could have used more beverage refills.

Cosmic Diner Food: C 
The Cosmic Diner has all of the regular diner staples.  There is plenty of breakfast, lunch and dinner options but nothing unique or that sticks out.

I decided to stick with a tried and true diner staple: the gyro.  When it came, I noticed, there was a massive mound of salad and minimal French fries. Usually it’s quite the opposite. I asked for Greek dressing, and the waitress said she had no idea was Greek dressing was.

The gyro itself was good.  There wasn’t anything too special about it.  The French fries were the same story.  The theme of the diner, is okay but not great. I appreciated the amount of salad, though.  cosmic diner NYC

Cost: $$
For my gyro and coffee, the cost was $18.

Summary/Would I come back to the Cosmic Diner NYC)? 
It wasn’t a terrible stop, but I probably won’t be back.  There are plenty of unique and fun restaurants, close-by or cheaper restaurants with better quality food.  Was a bad meal?  No.  Was it a life-changing, fantastic meal?  No. The theme of the diner is okay, but not great.

Atmosphere: A
Coffee: A
Food: C
Service: C
Price: $12-20
Overall: B 

You Can See All Diner Reviews Here.

Questions for you:
Do you like gyro?
New York City locals: what is your favorite diner?

Woodstown Diner

Woodstown Diner

Woodstown Diner (Woodstown, NJ)

A few weeks ago, I found myself in Woodstown, NJ.  I had driven by the Woodstown Diner a few times and heard it was good.  Since it was around lunchtime, I wanted to stop.

Woodstown Diner Atmosphere: B
The outside of the Woodstown Diner is a standard but lengthy building.  It looks like a regular restaurant versus a metallic, shiny diner.  I was shocked to see how long the Woodstown Diner is.  From the road, it looks like it might seat 50 people, but once you pull into the parking lot, you realize it can probably sit close to 200!

Woodstown Diner

With a possible apartment on top?

The inside of the Woodstown diner itself has several rooms, including a bar and banquet hall.  It was surprising.  Many people don’t realize this, but liquor laws in New Jersey are strict, and it’s rare to find a diner in South Jersey that serves alcohol.  In fact, New Jersey is one of the few states with dry towns that don’t serve alcohol at all.

Even though it wasn’t crowded, we were sat in the second room next to the dirty dish cart.  Out of all the tables, I wasn’t sure why the manager sat me there.   It was loud, and our meal was interrupted continuously by staff bussing tables and the clinking of dishes.

Woodstown Diner Service: B
The manager seemed to be having a difficult day when he sat us.  He threw the menus on the table and walked away.  The waitress of the Woodstown Diner was friendly, and I have no complaints.  She refilled our beverages often, and the food was brought out reasonably quick.  

Woodstown Diner Coffee: B
Even though the coffee mug at the Woodstown Diner was small, the coffee itself was good.  The Woodstown Diner uses the local Lacas coffee which as many readers know is my favorite! Woodstown Diner

Woodstown Diner Food: B
The Woodstown Diner menu is that of a typical diner.  The Woodstown Diner menu has everything from eggs to lunch and plenty of specials. Everything about the menu is traditional, and there wasn’t anything that grabbed my eye as being unique or extraordinary. I decided to order a gyro wrap with French fries.  A classic diner favorite but not something I’ve ordered in a while!

The gyro itself was huge. It was packed well with plenty of lettuce, gyro meat, onions, and tomato.  It was packaged well and one of the least messy gyro wraps I’ve had.  It came with steak fries which weren’t bad. Woodstown Diner

Cost: $
For my gyro and coffee, the cost was $10.  One of my cheaper diner meals.

Overall Summary/Would I come back to the Woodstown Diner? 
I enjoyed the Woodstown Diner, and it was a hidden gem in Southern New Jersey.  While the manager was somewhat rude, our service, in general, was decent and I would go back.

Summary: 
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: B
Service: B
Food: B
Cost: $8-15
Overall: B

You can see all of the diner reviews here.

Questions for you:
What’s the best coffee you’ve had recently?
Where was the last place you ate? 

Randolph Diner

Randolph Diner (Randolph, NJ)

Recently I stopped at the Randolph Diner in Randolph, New Jersey.  The Randolph Diner has been towards the top of my to-do list because the diner serves both Octopus and squid.  For those who don’t know, Octopus is one of my favorite foods.  A diner that serves that is unique.  I wasn’t sure whether I should trust diner octopus but I was willing to try.

I arrived at the Randolph diner for dinner on a weekday.  The outside was confusing, and I parked on the completely wrong side.  After walking around the entire restaurant, I made it inside.  There was a lot of construction both inside and out.  It’s the second diner I’ve been too with construction lately (Gus’s was the first).

Randolph Diner Atmosphere: B
As I mentioned, the Randolph Diner was going through a lot of construction.  A lot of the restaurant was boarded up.  The area that wasn’t boarded up was fine and open and spacious.

Randolph Diner

Where is the front…nobody knows…

It used a brown and green color-blocked color scheme.  Randolph Diner

Other than the construction, it was a big open and clean diner.

Randolph Diner Coffee: C
The coffee at the Randolph Diner was okay.  It wasn’t good or bad, but there was nothing unique or exciting about it.  To be honest, I’ve had a lot of boring diner coffee lately!

Randolph Diner

Randolph Diner Service: B
The waitress at the Randolph Diner was friendly.  I wish we had more refills or napkins, but she was nice and got us most of what we needed.

Randolph Diner Food: A
As I mentioned, I wanted to go to the Randolph Diner because of the unique and interesting Randolph Diner menu.

I ordered the grilled octopus appetizer.  It was grilled and topped with butter.  I wasn’t sure what or how much to expect.  When I received it, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of octopus on the dish.  The octopus itself was some of the best I’ve had in a restaurant period and worth it.  It was crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.  It was even better than a lot of seafood restaurants I’ve been too.

For my entree at the Randolph Diner, I ordered the Gyro special.  I didn’t read the Randolph Diner menu clearly, but I assumed the plate had all of the Greek specialties.  When I received it, it had a few pieces of gyro meat, a single grape leaf, a side salad and pita bread.  Honestly, I was disappointed it didn’t have anything else.

The gyro was more sausage-like and wasn’t my favorite, but it wasn’t bad.  The side salad was good, and it’s hard to mess up pita bread. Randolph Diner

To be honest, the octopus appetizer saved the food.  My entree wasn’t great, but the app was phenomenal.

Randolph Diner Cost: $$
For my coffee, appetizer, and meal, the cost was $30.  The appetizer alone was $14.  I do realize Octopus is expensive, but I think the gyro special was overcharged.  Most diner specials are cheaper or have more food.

Overall thoughts/Would I come back to the Randolph Diner:
I enjoyed the Randolph Diner.  The octopus was by far my favorite and I would go for that alone.  How many diners serve octopus? Next time I go the Randolph Diner, I will order a different entrée, but I do look forward to seeing what kind of construction they are doing.

Summary:
Atmosphere: C
Coffee: C
Service: B
Food: A-
Price: $15-25
Overall: B

You can see all of the diner reviews here.

Questions for you:
Do you like octopus?

Readington Diner

Readington Diner

Recently I stopped at the Readington Diner in Readington, New Jersey.  I’m not sure how I stumbled across the diner, but I was in the area, and it sounded pretty good.

Readington Diner Atmosphere: B
The atmosphere of the Readington Diner is unique.  The outside has a little mascot dude.  I’m not entirely sure what he is, but he plastered around everywhere including on the coffee mugs.

Readington Diner

The inside of the Readington Diner is definitely outdated and not in a good way.  They have wooden paneling that is clearly old, well worn and needs to be repainted.  There is a lot of random things strung all over the walls including coffee paintings, the mascot man and garden butterflies all over.  It was clean, but it could definitely use a makeover.  I liked that they included the mascot around, but the other things were random at best.

Readington Diner Coffee: A
The coffee at the Readington Diner was the Lacas brew from Pennsauken.  I’ve talked a little bit before about it, but it’s a local brew in New Jersey as well as one of my favorites.  The waitress put the whipped cream on perfectly.  The coffee was great.

Readington Diner

Readington Diner Service: A
The waitress at the Readington Diner was hilarious.  Anyone with a sense of humor is a winner in my book (See FueledbyLOLZ name).  She brought out plenty of refills and everything we needed.  She was great.

Readington Diner Food: B
The Readington Diner menu has everything a stereotypical NJ diner has, I was in a Greek mood, so I ordered the bruschetta/hummus appetizer.  It came with a lot of pita bread circled around the bruschetta and hummus.  The presentation, as well as the actual appetizer, was delicious.  It was more pita bread than I was expecting, but pita bread is my favorite.  I’m in the minority, but I like a big portion size.

Readington Diner

I ordered the Gyro salad from the Readington Diner specials menu.  Honestly, it was like gyro and a little bit of salad.  There was more gyro meat than a typical meal, let alone a salad.  It was great, just oddly proportioned. The actual lettuce was lackluster, and I wish there had been more actual “green.”  The rest of the toppings including olives, onions and feta were a great compliment.

Readington Diner gyro salad

Readington Diner Cost: $
For the coffee, appetizer and gyro special the cost was $21.  It wasn’t a bad price considering how much gyro meat I received.

Overall thoughts/Would I come back to the Readington Diner?
I didn’t hate the Readington Diner, but there are others I would prefer more.  The Readington Diner is a good stop, but I don’t have anything interesting or unique to report.  It’s some of the better coffee I’ve had, though.

Readington Diner Summary:
Atmosphere: B
Coffee: A
Service: A
Food: B
Cost: $10-20
Overall: B
 

You can see all diner reviews here.

Questions for you:
What’s the most unique restaurant mascot you’ve seen?
Have you tried gyro meat before? Do you like it?

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