8 St. Louis Staples + 1 New Venue for Delicious Diner Food
1. Crown Candy Kitchen
Perhaps St. Louis’ most well-known diner, Crown Candy Kitchen has been in operation in Old North since 1913. Two of the many transcendent menu items at this culinary destination: the old-fashioned soda machine and the candy counter stocked with house-made chocolates. The signature BLT is layered sky high with thick-cut bacon, and the World’s Fair sundaes are picture perfect.
2. Chili Mac’s Diner
As the name implies, most of the dishes at Chili Mac’s Diner are smothered in chili, including their version of the classic slinger, tamales and Mac-Ala-Mode, which is made with spaghetti topped with two eggs and covered in chili. The retro diner gives Downtown residents and workers a reliable breakfast and lunch on Pine Street.
3. Morning Glory
Perhaps the newest diner in St. Louis, Morning Glory opened on Cherokee Street on Feb. 14 by Ari Jo Ellis, who previously operated The Cut inside The Fortune Teller Bar. The quaint, cozy diner offers a menu of no-frills “greasy-spoon”-style food.
The Eat-Rite‘s quiet corner south of Downtown has housed five businesses in the past 100 years, but it’s been a diner under the current name since 1986. Last year, a local couple bought the beloved business in order to keep the tradition alive. The new owners sharpened up the space and menu in the spring of 2018—but left the signature slinger untouched.
5. Tiffany’s Diner
Tiffany’s Diner is in the heart of Maplewood on Manchester Road. Its painted windows welcome guests into a small space with counter seating only. Open since 1960, the 24/7 diner has a well-deserved reputation for its classic slinger, but only those in the know appreciate its jukebox stocked with great taste in music and the occasional live performers.
6. Boardwalk Café
From the outside, the Boardwalk Café is understated, but inside, this Webster Groves favorite is a picturesque diner with black-and-white tiled floors, booths for seating and a slinger big enough for two.
7. Carl’s Drive-In
Located on historic Route 66 (or Manchester Road) in Brentwood, Carl’s Drive-In serves a fantastic smashburger and a signature Curly Q Hotdog. Built in 1918, the diner was originally a Lubrite Service Station, before being transformed into a hot-dog stand in 1943. It became Carl’s Drive-In in 1959. Take a seat at the bar and order their famous root beer in a frosty mug to complete the experience.
8. Spencer’s Grill
Spencer’s Grill opened in Kirkwood in 1947 and has been a breakfast-and-lunch staple for suburbanites ever since. Now under second-generation family ownership, it shows no signs of slowing down. Further proof of Spencer’s longevity: Its remarkable 80-year-old art deco neon sign along Kirkwood Road still has a working analog clock.
9. Goody Goody Diner
The Goody Goody Diner is an iconic North County eatery known far and wide for its chicken and waffles. Open since 1948, the diner has an extensive menu of every breakfast item one could wish for, plus sandwiches, burgers, entrées and shakes.
Featured image courtesy of David Torrence.