The Most Iconic Diner in Every State
From Alabama to Wyoming, these are the most memorable and delicious greasy spoons in all of the 50 states.
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From 24-hour breakfasts to cozy retro booths, who doesn’t love a good diner? According to customer ratings, TripAdvisor scores and, of course, local reviews, these are the best greasy spoons in every state. Dig in!
Alabama: City Cafe Diner, Huntsville
The first thing you’ll see when you walk into City Cafe Diner is rows and rows of homemade cakes, smothered in fluffy frosting. While you can’t go wrong with any of the decadent dessert options, we recommend the “volcano.” It’s a massive slice with layers of cheesecake, chocolate mousse and brownie all coated in chocolate and slivered almonds.
Alaska: Kriner’s Diner, Anchorage
No, your server didn’t just hand you the New York Times—it’s actually the Kriner’s Diner menu, printed to look like a local newspaper. On it, you’ll find Andy’s Awesome Burger (named after the owner himself) which is loaded with bacon, spicy Jalapeno cheese, BBQ sauce, and fried onion strings. Andy claims it’s his “best invention to date.” Before you pack up for Alaska, make sure you follow this ultimate travel checklist.
Arizona: Mel’s Diner, Phoenix
Not only was it the setting of the TV sitcom Alice, but Mel’s Diner is also the establishment that coined the phrase, “Kiss my grits!” So naturally, going for breakfast (the most important meal of the day) is key. You’ll leave with a belly full of syrup-covered pancakes, massive omelets, and their beloved home fries. This phrase is one of the 27 secret phrases you would only hear at a 1950s diner.
Arkansas: At The Corner, Little Rock
This self-proclaimed modern diner uses all locally-sourced, fresh ingredients for their small—but diverse—breakfast and lunch menus. Sitting in ’50s-style red and white booths, patrons rave about the mason jar mimosas and chicken and waffles in particular. Plus, with the convenient self-serve coffee station, you’ll never have to wait on a refill of joe.
California: Peggy Sue’s 50’s Diner, Yermo
Out in the middle of the blazing hot desert, Peggy Sue’s is an explosion of rainbow pastels and ’50s memorabilia. After filling up with the Buddy Holly Bacon Cheeseburger and crispy curly fries, head out back to stroll through the “dinersaur” park featuring giant metal dinosaurs scattered among ponds, fountains, and bridges.
Colorado: Moonlight Diner, Denver
The shiny chrome exterior of this boxcar-turned-diner is the first sign you’ve come to the right place for greasy comfort food. While the burgers always get rave reviews, you have to order the location-appropriate Denver omelet stuffed with green peppers, onions, tomatoes, diced ham, and cheese. Find out the surprising birthplaces of your favorite foods.
Connecticut: O’Rourke’s Diner, Middletown
All lads and lasses are welcome at this Irish-influenced eatery. Famous across Connecticut for their breakfasts (the line on Saturday morning often goes out the door), they offer everything from the Dubliner omelet filled with corned beef, fingerling potatoes, and cheddar cheese to “Leprechaun Bites,” an assortment of pastries and baked goods including fresh Irish soda bread. Don’t miss the 22 most haunted cities in America.
Delaware: Lucky’s Coffee Shop, Wilmington
Did you know that Delaware is unofficially known as the Scrapple Capital of the World? If you’ve never tried the savory breakfast meat made from pork meat and cornmeal (locals eat it with a squirt of ketchup on top), head to Lucky’s for pancakes with a side of sizzling Scrapple. Bring the kids: They can order the “I Don’t Care” (chicken tenders) or the “I Want to Go Home” (grilled cheese).
Florida: Peter Pan Diner, Fort Lauderdale
This Florida diner—a favorite late-night hangout of famous bassist Jaco Pastorius—is a lot like its namesake, Peter Pan, in that it will never grow up. Step inside and you’ll be transported back to the ’70s with kitschy decor and of course, a working jukebox. Everyone loves the Greek dishes, especially the chicken gyro with homemade tzatziki sauce.