I love a roof terrace.
Gary’s old house-share had a wonderful one, and we used to sit up there for hours in the summer, barbecuing burgers and drinking beers. But since we’ve moved into our own place, I’m having to get my roof terrace fix from slightly further afield.
Right now, the one I love most is the glorious sun trap that is The Diner, in Camden. They have several branches across London (and one in Southampton), but if you’re looking for a roof terrace, head to the Camden location.
With a hefty All-American menu, a fab cocktail list, and plenty of seating for you and your pals, what’s not to love?
Wander through the downstairs restaurant, climb the stairs, push aside the beaded curtain, and you’ll find yourself on a big L-shaped, decked terrace.
There are no spectacular views (unless we’re counting the 10 foot mural on the wall behind!), but that’s OK. We’re not here to gaze at the sunset, we’re here to eat, drink and be merry!
And The Diner offers that in spades.
We started with a round of drinks (local Camden lager and Long Island Iced Teas), and a bowl of Queso and Tortilla Chips.
Rich, gooey and utterly moreish. I could have eaten the whole bowl with a spoon! (But why use a spoon when you can use a tortilla chip eh?)
Freakshow Chicken. Tender buttermilk chicken strips, served with a squeeze of lime and a dipping pot of spicy hot sauce
The WTF Fries were a big crowd pleaser!
Golden fries, topped with shredded BBQ pork, bacon, fried eggs, gravy and chilli flakes. It’s a filthy, messy, utterly decadent affair – so of course, it’s absolutely delicious.
I wasn’t sure about the mix of fried egg and gravy, but it works SO WELL. Very very yum.
More queso! You can never have too much queso, I think.
This is actually the SUPER Queso, topped with spicy beef chili, salsa, sour cream, fresh guacamole, and a sprinkling of jalapeños.
Want more jalapeños? Get yourself involved with the Bacon Jalapeño Tater Tots. I was SO excited for these. The girls had blogged about them on a previous Diner date, and I’d been looking forward to them aaaall day.
Fried mashed potato balls, infused with spicy jalapeño, wrapped in fried bacon, and served with a creamy dipping sauce. SO. GOOD. (And very moreish. Before I knew it, I’d eaten about seven!)
For the vegetarians and vegans among you: never fear! The Diner hasn’t forgotten you.
The lovely Emma (vegan) and Claire (vegetarian) both gave an enthusiastic thumbs up to the Diner Vegan Burger: a soft vegan patty (made with beans and other yummy things), served in a vegan bun, with lettuce, tomato, pickles, red onion, guacamole and hot sauce.
There several other yummy options available for you, including a vegetarian cheese burger, and a vegan taco salad.
More sides! These are the Loaded Tater Tots: fried mashed potato balls, topped with spicy beef chilli, creamy blue cheese and sour cream, and spring onion.
Now, I’m not a big fan of blue cheese, so these weren’t my favourite. Everyone else seemed to like them, but I’ll stick to the bacon jalapeño ones for now!
Next: Diner Chicken Wings, beautifully crisp and spicy red on the outside, nice and tender on the inside, and served with blue cheese dip – which I actually did really like! The blue cheese flavour was subtle, the texture was creamy, and overall: a big win for me.
We also had Cheese Fries. Because cheese fries.
Cheeeeesy cheese fries.
These were wonderfully cheesy, but the fries themselves were just too underdone for me. I like my fries crisp and crunchy, and these were far too soft.
By this time, we were stuffed to the gills, but there was one dish we just couldn’t leave behind: the Mac n Cheese.
I adoreeee Mac n Cheese, and because I’ve yet to master the art of making it at home (despite Anna Mae’s best efforts), I always have to order it when I see it on the menu.
This one was… OK. The grilled cheese topping was perfection, but the cheese sauce inside was disappointingly bland. It needed a bit of mustard and seasoning to kick it up a notch.
Are you sold yet? If not, you should also know that the staff are awesome and attentive and fast. The setting, as I’ve said before, is wonderful. And the prices are super affordable: around £6-8 for a main, and £2-5 for sides.
So if you’re looking for a great spot to catch up with your friends, or enjoy a fun date night: check out The Diner. You won’t regret it!
*I was a guest of The Diner for this visit.
All opinions, photos and words are, as always, mine!