Bianca: So I have now become one of those ridiculous people who will travel for food, luckily I have a pretty obliging social circle that allow me to dictate nearly every food movement that is made. Which is why we found ourselves at Miss America’s Diner in Riverwood one rainy Friday eve. Situated just opposite the Conca d’oro, the venue for many a wog wedding I was dragged to back in the day.
Essentially a pop-up old school American ‘diner’, operating Friday and Sunday evenings from 6pm and a regular café ‘The Spot Caffe’ during the day. Certainly an interesting concept and I’d be curious as to what the regular day-to-day food is like and why they haven’t converted the diner/Americana theme to its regular ‘9-5’ operation. Considering just how popular they are…
Run by Sisters Constance and Alexis, one thing is clearly obvious and that is the love for the food and for the era. Operating hours during the week begin at 6:30am and pulling in a full day shift, only to shut and then virtually re-decorate the café is a mammoth task, so in that respect my (imaginary) hat is tipped at you ladies.
This particular Friday the place is insane, atmosphere wise I’d kind of put it on par with Mister Gee’s, just for the fact that it isn’t a permanent operation so there is that element of exclusivity. Service is a little haphazard and chaotic, with a spilt milkshake an unfortunate result. But, they handled it like pro’s, cleaned up the mess and deducted a few items off the bill. So, that my friends is customer service.
Shall I stop dilly dallying?
First up, the shakes. The ‘Black and White Cow’ $8 a vanilla milkshake topped with whipped cream and lollies was a little mute in the flavour stakes, a vanilla shake ordinarily wouldn’t be my first pick and this one didn’t change my opinion. The ‘Fat Brown Cow’ $9 was more up my alley, strong chocolatey notes, with a fair amount of whipped cream and lollies. Definitely fun and creative but I’d be hard-pressed to part with $8-9 for any future visits.
There was no way we were getting burgers and not making a beeline for some fries. Settling on the ‘Heart Attack’ – skinny fries topped with crispy bacon, melted cheese and shallots $12.00. It was going on 8pm by the time we got our food but these were devoured within minutes of hitting the table, there’s just something about that fake American cheese that makes everything taste a million times better. The bacon was as advertised, crispy, as well as adding bursts of saltiness with each bite. Chips were the perfect combination of crispy and fluffy – so a nice balance there. The shallots were great to add a touch of sweetness and freshen up an otherwise heavy and rich dish. 5/5 spuds.
Now down to business. First up was the ‘Nevada Get Me Wong’ – two beef patties, cheddar, bacon, lettuce, tomato, house made Nevada sauce, freshly cut onions and pickles $14.00. This was a behemoth when it arrived on the table, so much so, I saw the fear in my friends eyes as it was plopped in front of her. Across the board we found all the patties to be well seasoned, cooked well, with a nice exterior char. This particular burger was on the large side, with large rings of raw onion creating some scary height. It became a mission to eat and one had to practically unhinge your jaw to take a decent and respectable bite out of it. We ended up removing quite a few ingredients to make it more manageable. For my tastes the raw onion was a little much, especially in such abundance. The sauce was highly reminiscent of a ranch dressing, which we all liked. But this was our least favourite burger, 2.7/5 pickles.
But don’t worry, it revs right up the pickle scale in a moment.
Bennysandra, ever the manly man got the ‘Marilyn’ – Three beef patties, cheddar, bacon, lettuce & tomato $16.00. If you’re hungry, keen to show off or hell, just want a hilariously awesome photo. This is your burger! He devoured this burger no joke in under 5 mins. So cheesy, so meaty, so good. He gave it a 4/5 pickles.
And now, myself. I had the ‘James Dean- Be a Rebel!’ – Two beef patties, cheddar, bacon, lettuce and tomato $12.00. Again, patties were cooked well, bacon was crispy as requested. The butter lettuce was extremely OTT, I hate lettuce on burgers and was going to request it be left off. But I’ve now gotten into the habit of leaving the burger as is on menus so I can experience it as the chef intends. Then proceeding to remove the lettuce if it offends me and it usually does. I removed it after 2 bites, there was way too much and I found it watered down the flavour you actually want, the good stuff.
Flavour wise I kind of want to lump it with Mary’s my reasoning was the dedication to the American style burger, there was a slight greasiness to the bite which did linger. Not a bad thing but something I do notice as I eat a fair few. Also interesting use of BBQ sauce, not something I generally favour but it was nice here for a change. This gets a resounding positive 4/5 pickles.
Props to the tunes, props to the girls and props to the props.
Great atmosphere for families, friends and dates – you name it.