The Diner Spitafields – Exemplary American soul and comfort food
According to the American Heart Foundation, 1 in 3 Americans are obese. Can you blame them? I would be too (my metabolism may be high but my self control is very low) if I had over-sized portions of ‘sugar, spice and everything nice’ (and fried) readily available to me wherever I turned. The Americans have it good when it comes to soul/comfort food.
Infamous American grub you mostly hear of (and drool over) on US TV shows (no, I’m not talking about burgers and pizzas) may not be as easily accessible to us as in America, but The Diner Spitafields (and their other six branches) brings a large authentic portion of these goodies, enough to keep us smiling and loosening our belts.
I visited the brand spanking new branch in Spitafields with some friends. All I can say is that we literally ate SO much, we had to dance it off afterwards. Everything on the vast and varied menu is tempting, and it was totally A-OK to pig out the proper American way.
I will begin with the American fairground favourite- the corn dog. It’s golden brown, crispy on the outside and hot diggety dog on the inside. I didn’t expect them to come in a pair either (only £4.50). The batter wasn’t too fatty or thick, and the meat inside was juicy and filling. I don’t think I ever want to go back to a normal hot dog again.
The side dish of Mac n Cheese (£3.50) could have easily been a light main or a filling starter – it was huge. I don’t have mac n cheese that often so I can make this statement – it was one of the best I’ve had since God knows when. Densely packed, perfectly cooked macaroni, and the most luxurious, creamy and rich cheese sauce which stuck to the ribs.
I truly felt like an American fatty when this massive plate of butter milk fried chicken and waffles arrived, accompanied by a side of gravy. It’s one of those things that may sound strange at first, but once you’ve eaten all the ingredients together, it just makes perfect sense. The flavoursome chicken was golden with a good crispy texture whilst being moist and piping hot on the inside. S-S-SOUL FOOD. I would have preferred however, a better chicken to waffle ratio (that one chicken wasn’t enough for two huge waffles).
I’ve tried many, many things, but meatloaf was not on the list until that evening. Now, I see why it’s loved. The moreish Meatloaf Hoagie was extremely filling, even when shared between three. The loaf was wrapped in grilled bacon and topped with Monterey Jack cheese and pig jam, all between a hoagie roll. Sounds messy? It was…it really was.
The Mexican-sounding Loco Moco was truly ‘dirty’ (in a good way). It comprised of dirty rice, topped with a juicy 6oz well-seasoned beef patty with American cheese which laid under fried eggs. This was all smothered in gravy and jalapeno.
Feeling our food-defeat rearing its ugly head, we still managed to eat a huge portion of chilli cheese fries. I’m sure it was quite a sad sight to see. It’s as if we were meth addicts searching for more gear under the carpet. We just couldn’t stop. The staff had to kick us out (in a nice way) because we were the last to leave. Throughout the night, I don’t think I can even remember seeing an empty space on the table.
Did I mention they have boozy slush puppies?
Back to my first point, imagine if this American soul food was readily available to you everywhere you turned, unless you have a metabolism like mine, (touch wood, wink wink) you’d be part of the obese crew too. .. but atleast you’d be happy in your eating…?
THE DINER. I LOVE YOU
The Diner Spitafields
4 Horner Sq
Old Spitafields Market