By Kathryne Grisim (@foodmuser)
In North America, a diner is typically a small roadside restaurant with a long counter and booths. The Diner’s Grill (405 Turenne Street) has neither a long counter nor booths, but it does serve up authentic diner-style, from scratch, comfort food and it does so very, very well.
Located in the middle of the St. Boniface industrial area, it took Siri to help us successfully navigate to the spot. Since my daughter-in-law and I had a three-year-old and a one-year-old with us, our server (who I assumed was Josh, one of the owners) immediately gave us a children’s menu to order for the little ones.
Delightfully wholesome selections like a grilled cheese sandwich (with Bothwell cheddar) and a hearty chicken noodle soup arrived soon thereafter.
The former was ooey and gooey with crispy edges, just as it should be and the latter was full of chicken, herbs and rotini noodles.
Even the child’s portion was more than generous and fed both little ones with leftovers.
My daughter-in-law chose the Reuben with a side of fries and I had the crispy chicken sandwich with a side of jalapeño corn chowder.
Oh my goodness, the Reuben was absolutely amazing. For one, it was enormous and even though we were splitting it, she brought ¼ of it home. It had the standard corned beef, Swiss cheese and sauerkraut but it was the from scratch remoulade sauce. Don’t confuse their French remoulade sauce with the Creole remoulade sauce that is popular in Louisiana. Creole-style remoulade sauce is red and usually quite spicy. French-style remoulade sauce is milder and can be somewhat tart from the capers and pickles that might be added. It offset the rest of the sandwich ingredients perfectly. Beware though, it was so juicy it would have run down our arms if we hadn’t utilized a stack of napkins to sop up the excess. I have always been a fan of Reuben sandwiches and from now on, I will always compare them to the Diner’s Grill perfect sandwich. The French fries were a bit overcooked but we kept picking at them anyway. The youngest would dip them in ketchup, lick off the ketchup and then dip them again.
The crispy chicken sandwich that I shared was stellar: generous, perfectly cooked and crispy as promised. It was topped with apple cider vinegar coleslaw on a pretzel bun. So too, the jalapeño corn chowder that we loved but also could not finish.
If you have a big appetite and aren’t concerned about your waistline, you will love this authentic place. Here’s a scoop: they are opening another restaurant called The Tipsy Cow on Portage Avenue this summer.
The Diner’s Grill is owned by Joshua Mesojednik and Yang Meng. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and also have dessert, kids’ and takeout menus available.
Watch for Food Musings every second Wednesday in The Headliner, The Herald, The Lance, The Metro, The Sou’wester and The Times.