Being born and raised in Syracuse, I have been fortunate enough to stuff my face with sunny-side up eggs, pancakes, waffles and coffee from many Central New York diners.
Frittatas are my favorite. Mmm… .
Most have had great service, character and food — worth coming back to. Yet, Julie’s Diner has stood out to me over the years because of something else: the family-like environment.
Don’t get me wrong, the food and service is fabulous too. But the first time I met the waitresses, the cooks and the owner Kristen Macko, I felt like I was sitting at a Sunday night dinner with my entire family at somebody’s home. It was that fun.
Regulars get treated like extended family. Most customers are known by name. The waitresses even know what customers order day-to-day and week-after-week.
Why to go: Julie’s Diner is more than just a breakfast diner, it’s an “everything” diner: breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert (and I would recommend the chocolate cake.) Next time you go, order waffles topped with strawberries, the creamy baked potato soup or the turkey club sandwich. You won’t be disappointed.
The Scene: Be prepared for busy weekends and weekdays. This diner has a consistent flow of customers throughout the day. Except for the prime-time breakfast hours on the weeknds (7 a.m. until about 10 a.m.), the diner still provides fast service and does a great job getting customers a table and their food.
The crowd: Parents, grandparents, entire families, etc. are the standard type of diner customers. You may get lucky and see Syracuse University’s assistant basketball coach Mike Hopkins, who has been a regular to Julie’s Diner for a long time now.
Prices: Julie’s Diner is very, very affordable. There are some breakfast specials that are even $2.99 — a price you won’t find at most Syracuse diners. The lunch special, which is usually about $5.99, tends to be such a large plate of food — customers can’t leave the diner hungry.
3800 Brewerton Road
North Syracuse, NY