Skip the 4,000 mile trip and let the great American diner come to you. London has turned its hand to offering the American diner experience, and it’s picking up steam with new diner-inspired restaurants popping up all over the capital.
From Portobello Road’s Electric Diner to the veganised experience at Rudy’s Vegan Diner, these are London’s best for that all American experience.
London’s American diner scene doesn’t get much better than Soho House & Co’s Electric Diner on Portobello Road. Home to muted red booths, subway tiles and exposed brick walls, the diner serves up French-American fare, from chicken ‘n’ waffles to grilled cheese, Nashville fried cod with buttermilk ranch and fried shallot to steak tartare.
For the night owls, your late night cravings will be catered for thanks to their after hours menu, serving up dirty burgers, mozzarella sticks and buffalo chicken sandwiches.
Don’t miss: Head over to The Ned to try out their sister site, set in the majestic building and serving up diner and deli favourites.
191 Portobello Road, W11 2ED | The Ned
Serving up the great American experience, Big Moe’s is inspired by the spirit and tradition of an authentic 1950s diner. The venue goes all out on interiors, with black and white chequered tile floors, rich red signs, red and white booths and even an old school style jukebox.
On the food front, think thick milkshakes slurped by straw, hand-cut fries, home-grilled burgers and sticky BBQ lamb ribs.
Don’t miss: Retro interiors taken to the next level
Aldgate, Beckton & Wembley
Fat Boy’s Diner
Located at Trinity Buoy Wharf, Fat Boy’s Diner serves up some of the best burgers and milkshakes this side of the Atlantic. It’s been the backdrop of many a film and photoshoot, and is renowned for its bar-side stools and outdoor seating, perfect for soaking up the cultural ambience of the Wharf and tucking into delicious American dishes.
Although sadly right now this spot is closed, we’ve spotted on Trinity Buoy Wharf’s Instagram a callout for a job opportunity here so it won’t be long before it’s back up and running, flying out your orders.
All Star Lanes
Bowling rinks might not be renowned for the quality of their food but All Star Lanes is determined to change that. You’ll find each of their venues serving up party vibes and quality food, with everything from beef meatballs topped with grated mozzarella and toasted sourdough to wings slathered in your choice of sauce.
Grabbing a bite to eat after a game has never been so good.
Don’t miss: Their brunch, available every weekend, serves up all of your American favourites, from Reubens to salt beef hash.
From fresh lobster to smoky brisket, Big Easy is sure to satisfy any cravings you have. The restaurant group is renowned for its deliciously filthy dinners, serving up signature burgers, specialty sandwiches stacked with meats and lobster rolls.
The American feel keeps coming through the interiors, as well as live music every night! Expect to be bobbing along while you tuck into their dirty dishes.
Don’t miss: The real pit-cooked fresh Bar.B.Q. Anything from this section of the menu is great but we love the Carolina pulled pork or the family-style Bar.B.Q Blow Out.
Rudy’s Vegan Diner
Proving that vegans can enjoy American classics too is Rudy’s Vegan Diner. Now with locations in Islington and Camden Market, you’ll find them serving up the ultimate diner experience with a seasoned twist.
Interiors wise, they’ve got it pretty spot on with booth seating, chequered flooring and bar-side stools, although they’ve given it the Rudy’s twist by making their interiors different shades of yellow, rather than your 50s red.
On the menu expect reworked American classics, including the dirty dogz, a seitan dog topped with caramelised onions, sauerkraut, mustard and ketchup serving in a hoagie roll; steak frites, topped with ‘tenderloin’ steak with roasted mushroom and peppercorn sauce; and dirty burgers stacked with veganised versions.
Don’t miss: Get that real diner experience and order in a Rudy’s banana split. Think vanilla bean ice cream topped with chocolate sauce, cream and lots of Rudy’s sweets.
Tucked inside the Arcade Food Hall you’ll find Manna, an American style diner adding something new to London’s burger scene.
Find them serving up fried chicken, from the jalapeno popper fried chicken bun with hot honey, cream cheese and pickles to burgers, including the vegan symplicity burger served with cheese, mayo, mustard, ketchup and triple shallots in a potato bun.
Don’t miss: The simple chicken sandwich with crispy chicken, mayo and pickles. You can’t beat it.
Arcade Food Hall, 103 – 105 New Oxford Street, WC1A 1DB
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Back with a refreshed look, Camden Diner can be found pumping out waffles, ribs, wings, hot dogs and pancakes every day.
Expect exposed brick, neon signage and booth seating, alongside hearty American classics. They’ve also got a great outdoor dining area for when the sun decides to shine.
Don’t miss: Their famous freakshakes. Sugar overload incoming…
2 Jamestown Road, NW1 7BY
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Head East and grab yourself a booth to live out your American movie date night dreams. It’s packed out with intimate seating perfect for breakfast dates and late-night shakes.
Order yourself the lumberjack breakfast, made up of eggs, buttermilk pancakes, bacon and hash browns served with maple syrup and whipped honey butter or go savoury with the diablo burger, an 8oz beef patty with crisp bacon, cheese, pickles and their house burger sauce.
Don’t miss: A basket of the diner wings, great for dunking into blue cheese dip.
4 Horner Square, Spitalfields, E1 6EW