I have to be honest here. I’m kind of hesitant to write this place up, simply because I like it that much. I kind of want to keep it as my own secret place in NYC. I just moved into the neighborhood, and this local spot has become a home away from home. This is an authentic, genuine, all-American diner. Only, there’s no chintzy atmosphere, no gimmicks, no cheesiness. There is, however, some of the sweetest waitstaff I’ve ever encountered anywhere, and the food reminds me of my grandma’s. Editorial Note: my grandmother’s been cooking for a while, for a lot of people, to critical acclaim, and her food is impossible to replicate. The Comfort Diner comes close to replicating genius, though, and I couldn’t be happier about it.

While it’s technically a diner, the food really is out of this world and so much better than typical diner food. My favorite is the Chicken Fried Chicken, which is served with red smashed potatoes and collard greens, which are cooked with bacon. Yep, it’s that awesome. $15 means I’m not breaking the bank, either, and I’ve walked away with a meal that isn’t “diner food” so much as “home cooking.” And the portions are ample. I’ve sampled more of the menu than I should probably admit, but I will say I don’t think you can go wrong here — from the fried mac n’ cheese balls, to the much healthier turkey and avocado sandwich on whole grains, to the honey friend chicken, it’s all good.