There’s just something undeniably awesome about sliding into a vinyl booth and ordering an old-fashioned meal at a great diner. Check out these amazing dives, greasy spoons and retro diners across Massachusetts.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Art Cliff Diner, Vineyard Haven
This diner opened its doors in 1943, and hasn't stopped serving up old-school charm since. The portions here are generous and the service will make you feel right at home. Don't forget to grab a piece of their delicious pie, baked fresh every day. Art Cliff Diner is open Thursday through Sunday.
2. Rosebud Kitchen & Bar, Somerville
Opened in 1941, this place has weekly events like Milkshake Mondays (a new boozy flavor every Monday!), trivia on Thursdays, and Vinyl Night on Fridays at 9:30 PM. This is a great place for summer brunch, as they have a charming outdoor seating area that overlooks the street. If you'd prefer to sit inside, you'll be treated to a beautiful red and black interior and lots of chrome.
3. Ralph's Diner, Worcester
The slogan here is "Eat at Ralph's, Live Forever." While we can't promise results quite as good as that, this diner IS a great place to grab some delicious eats in a funky, 400-capacity, split-level dining room that also doubles as a live-music club. Originally built in the 1930s, Ralph's specializes in burgers, chili and rock n' roll.
4. Whately Diner, Whatley
This place is a no-frills spot for great grub and a family-friendly atmosphere. The Whately Diner serves the kind of meatloaf that you remember from your mom's kitchen, and you can't beat having jukeboxes at every booth.
5. Moran Square Diner, Fitchburg
If you're in the market for a delicious, early-morning breakfast, Moran Square Diner has you covered. Built in 1940 and open at 6 a.m., they specialize in simple, tasty fare that's served with a smile. Don't miss the peach pancakes for a sweet and fruity start to your day.
Boulevard Diner, Worcester
This place has a retro atmosphere that will take you back in time, and its prices definitely seem stuck in the past. You'll be hard pressed to find anything on the menu over $7, let alone $10. Grab a burger, BLT and dessert for less than an appetizer would cost you somewhere else.
7. Peg's Diner, Whitinsville
This place is kind of small – it only has four tables and a few counter seats – but it's big on flavor and hospitality. Their specialties include rich western omelettes, decadent banana cream pies and amazing egg salad sandwiches.
8. Carl's Oxford Diner, Oxford
Tip: if you ask for a large portion of bacon, you'll receive the above. The meals here are HUGE, cheap and incredibly tasty. Come hungry, because you'll need every inch of stomach space to tackle the delicious offerings at this diner.
9. Bernie's Dining Depot, Chicopee
So...we heard you like meat. Well, this is the place for you. Styled after an old-fashioned train dining car, Bernie's specializes in crazy big, crazy delicious cuts of meat. The "Conductor's Cut" is pictured above. As you can see, they're not fooling around.
10. Blue Moon Diner, Gardner
This place is a bit of a greasy-spoon-type joint, and has a strong local following of omelette and hash brown devotees. The service, food and atmosphere are all top-notch. Open early for breakfast at 6 a.m., the Blue Moon offers a huge menu and a great diner vibe.
11. Casey's Diner, Natick
With only 8 counter stools, this isn't really the place to go with a large party. However, you'll definitely want to stop by with a friend for their yummy tuna sandwiches, hamburgers and whoopie pies. The service is wicked fast, so even if the stools are all full when you arrive, you have a good chance at grabbing a seat before too long.
12. Bluebonnet Diner, Northampton
Open super early for breakfast (5:30 a.m.!), this place has been a local favorite since it opened in 1950. With great food, drinks and free parking, Bluebonnet puts the focus on friendly service and old-fashioned comfort foods at great prices.
13. Blanchard's 101 Diner, Worcester
This place may look small from the outside, but it's packed with great food and friendly staff on the inside. Try Blanchard's smoked pulled-pork omelette with mushrooms, onions and peppers. Served with a side of fruit and buttery rye bread.
Have you been to any of these great Massachusetts diners? Do you have a favoirte diner that wasn’t included on this list? Let us know!