New Jersey Diners, a love affair!

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New Jersey is the diner state — where else can you get just about anything you crave, huge desserts, breakfast of any kind and a cocktail in the middle of the night? So many diners, so little time. Here are the ones we like best, to help you narrow it down.

ALLWOOD DINER  913 Allwood Road, Clifton  973-365-2575

At the Allwood, opened by two brothers in 2010, all baking is done on premises, and the cooks are as adept at quesadillas, chicken parm and lox benedicts as they are with Greek staples like spinach pie. The corned beef hash is a work of art.  This place is always busy for a reason.  It's the best diner around, hands down.


Ritz Diner  72 East Mount Pleasant Avenue, Livingston  973-533-1213

Known for its apple pancake, really a plate-covering crêpe, this diner serves other traditional Jewish delicacies such as blintzes, matzah ball soup, matzah brei, kasha varnishkes, chocolate babka and challah. The menu also covers all the traditional diner bases. The most popular item is the Marion salad, chopped and studded with sesame chicken. 


Summit Diner, 1 Union Place, Summit  908-277-3256

Jersey’s oldest continually operating railroad-car style diner (made in 1938 by the Jerry O’Mahony Company of Elizabeth), is a lot livelier than most 80-year-olds. Pancakes and waffles sell well, as do housemade soups and Philly cheesesteaks. “Basically, it’s comfort food in a comforting environment,” Greberis says. Most comforting is that humblest of desserts, rice pudding, here executed with homespun care.

State Street Grill, 9 State Street, Bloomfield  973-748-3003

State Street Grill opened in 1980 and this place is always rocking.  Brick oven-fired Pizza made to order, ice cream and any type of diner food with huge portions.  They take pride in serving dishes with fresh, high quality ingredients. 

Park Wood Diner  1958 Springfield Avenue, Maplewood  973-313-3990

As a part of the Maplewood community, this family run restaurant makes you feel right at home. With a variety of foods from the classic cheeseburger to the crusted tilapia, there is something for everyone at this very traditional hometown diner.   All baked goods are homemade, if you have room for them.