Union Street Diner
Union Street Diner, not to be confused with Court Street Diner, is one of Athens’ sit-in restaurants best known for being open 24 hours on weekends. The diner will serve you at almost anything on its menu at any time of the day. It boasts a genuine diner menu full of breakfast foods, sandwiches, and assorted dinner items from Salisbury steak to quesadillas. Union Street brings out an interesting mix of people; early risers and scatterbrains, people studying in a fast food place. It’s really very interesting to visit and see the crowd you find.
The burgers I get here are always good; they are more than filling and the fries were delicious. The chili cheeseburger was good but the beef tastes somewhat bland. It would have been nicer if it had been cooked over some kind of grill or given some kind of spices. The barbecue bacon burger is stronger but the sauce isn’t that great. A plain burger I tried was pretty simple and I can’t complain about that.
The service is always mediocre. I was not served for at least 20 minutes because of confusion between the two waitresses working the lunch hour on day, which was not terrible busy. Though, once someone came to take my order, I probably had my food within 10 minutes. Surprisingly, no one thought to refill my drink or ask how the food was; someone just came up and gave me my bill. Other times I’ve felt like I’ve been forgotten altogether, once I had to go find a waitress to order. Nonetheless I always find my food on the table quickly.
I tried a few breakfast foods here, notably the pancakes. When I come in I’m usually in the mood to eat dinner (I prefer cooking my own breakfast, thank you) but to be fair, the breakfast options are a strong showing. The coffee was good, and the prices for such a wide variety of options are modest. I’m happy with that at least. The clientele is such an interesting group, some days only older people are enjoying meals, and other days only college kids are around. The variety of people is impressive, but I really can’t recommend a specific demographic for this place. I imagine a 24-hour place inevitably attracts people all over the spectrum.
In short, Union Street Diner is definitely worth a visit. I know some people who swear by this place and some who can’t stand it. The food is good, particularly the burger options and the breakfast menus. If you can chase down a waitress fast enough you might actually get your food quickly.
- Union Street Diner might have some of the best morning hours in town, opening at 7 a.m. Monday through Wednesday and open 24-hours Thursday through Saturday.
- Breakfast foods are the main items on the menu, served any time, any day.
- Breakfast aside, the burgers and fries are also a very strong item at any time of the day.