PJ’s American Diner in Newark is located just off St Marks Place on Clinton Arms Street (It also seems to be known as PJ’s American Coffee Bar).
We popped in to see if they were the real deal or just another spot jumping on the Americana wagon. I have eaten in many such places in the states and I do miss that! So I was feeling really hopeful and a little bit nostalgic when I spotted this place in Newark.
I kind of think that the American Style of Diner is like their version of our Greasy Spoon! I mean, you get good ones and bad ones, but you can almost never resist their charms.
I was very happy with what I found here at PJ’s Diner, they had all the vibes of an American Diner, a nice basic US menu, and lots of food being cooked from scratch on the flat top grill behind the counter.
I liked the décor, the jukebox and the well worn leather diner booths were a nice touch that gave it a good authentic diner feel. The ladies behind the counter were friendly and bubbly as they hustled away cooking up and serving out the food
I ordered the Washington Waffles which was essentially “Bacon and Waffle with Maple Syrup” for £4.25. I added a Fried Egg for another 50p (love a fried egg) and just to get the full sweet and savoury breakfast experience.
I think the name is a made up one, not the name of any classic American dish, in fact the only link to ‘Washington Waffles‘ I could find was more like a commentary on politicians droning away in the state capital.
This was a pretty decent affair, there was a helluva lot of crispy bacon strips topping my soft and fluffy waffle. I was actually pretty impressed with the portion size, now it may not have been the best bacon in the world, but it did a great job of fulfilling my desire as it lay draped all over the plate.
I was really glad that I asked for the Fried Egg, it really elevated the dish, I liked that it was cooked on the flat top inside one of those circular ring moulds so that it fitted nicely and neatly right in the midst of my bacon nest on top of my waffle.
There was a very liberal drizzle of maple syrup all over the plate and the Washington Waffle, I watched the lady at the counter squeeze it out from the bottle, I think she did at least three squeezes so I knew that I was getting plenty of sweetness with my dish.
I was well pleased with my choice! 🙂
The New Yorker
The New Yorker panini was a pretty decent little effort as well. I liked that they also cooked this from scratch, it wasn’t pulled out of a packet or premade in advance. They filled her up and cooked her under the press behind that counter just like all the other food.
The New Yorker was described on the menu as being filled with “Strips of Chicken in BBQ sauce, cheese and crispy streaky bacon”. It came with some of those tortilla chips and a simple salad. I ordered some fries as well by mistake as I forgot that chips are not crisps over here 🙂
By all accounts this was a pretty tasty sandwich! I would have probably chosen “The Nashville” which was described as being “crispy streaky bacon with cheese and tomato“.
That actually just sounds like one of my saturday morning brunches. Anyhow the panini seemed to be pretty good value priced up at £4.95 each.
PJ’s American Diner is located at 3-4 Clinton Arms Court, NG24 1EB, Newark, Nottingham.
It is a little bit worn at the edges but in a good way. The old leather booths might have seen better days but they are the real deal so they are forgiven. I like that this place feels real, the ladies on the pass and behind the counter were all friendly and welcoming and it did feel like a corner café or diner in the states.
It is most certainly not one of those USA diners out of a box that seem to be popping up all over the place these days.
I was really happy to find this place and I am curious to return to see if they can do a decent hot dog and also to see if their chalkboard offerings of BBQ Pulled Pork is any good.
I will probably just have another plate of bacon and waffles though if I am totally honest 🙂
Oh and if you see random people walking through with bags of clothes and funny hats? Well that is the crowd going upstairs to Chuckles the Costume hire shop 🙂
PJ’s Diner Breakfast Menu
Hot Dogs and Panini Menu