The Reckoner!

Diners! Awesome, or meh?

The Official Significant Other of The Reckoner and I generally have the same culinary tastes, but there's one argument that we just can't settle, and we need your help!

You see, despite the fact that Sal is from Baltimore -- yes, you heard me, from Baltimore, home of five billion diners and the movie Diner --  she is actually not a big fan of diners as institutions.  Her perspective on it is that diners generally make food that you could make yourself, at home, just as well as they do.  Why pay $8.50 for french toast when you can make it in your own kitchen for $3?

My perspective is, come on!  Sure, you probably could make yourself a chicken Caesar salad wrap with fries in your own kitchen, but you never will.  And you're certainly not going to eat that chicken Caesar salad wrap on a paper placemat that advertises the local rhinoplasty hut, or the best place in the area to get lumber.  And you can forget about idly reading an Auto Shopper while sitting at home.  These things may all seem irrelevant, but they're a vital part of the diner experience, which is that there is no better place to bullshit than in a diner.

So tell me, Reckonauts!  Who's the crazy one who needs to be institutionalized here?  The person who loves diners and thinks they're great?  Or the person who always says 'meh' and says we should go to the new Thai place down the street instead? 

Reckoning Results!
Yay Diners!
Meh. Diners.
Coffee and formica!
Let's try the Thai place.
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Reckoning Comments!

Mastori's - Best. Burgers. Ever. especialy when accompanied by the fried mushrooms with dijon mustard sauce.... mmmmmmm

Always opt for the diner...Would love to take a cross-country trip and eat at every diner along the way....

This Reckoning brought to you by the Great State of New Jersey. 

Diners in bigger cities are becoming the odd men out as fancy burger joints, Banh Mi/Pho/noodle/dumpling shops, trendy food trucks, MEATBALL SHOPS for G*d's sake, et al. are flooding the $6-$12 lunch-and-sometimes-dinner market.  

Yelp, Chowhound, and the other online hangouts for logorrheic foodies are not showing the old-guard dinersaurs much love and the results are in: on my last trip home, two beloved institutions with laminated menus that list way too many items were closed after however many decades of service.  There's still one left, kept afloat by the big round life preserver of its on-site donut production facilities.  

Diners without a comparable hook (retro nostalgia won't cut it) are screwed, unless they're the only cheap restaurant for miles.  

I think the important question of timing needs to be addressed - diners at 3:00 am, definitely NOT meh.  Diners at 3:00 pm, when there are other options, meh

The Reckoner!