Classic Diners

Classic Diners in Connecticut

I am not a big diner guy and I certainly never thought that those few that remain in Connecticut would warrant their own CTMQ sub-section.

But then I had lunch one day at Collin’s Diner in North Canaan and that all changed. The diner itself is 70 years old and the attempts the owners make there to keep it “authentic” got me thinking… So I took a few pictures and started poking around these InterTubes to learn about old timey diners.

Damian leaving Collin’s Diner in North Canaan

It didn’t surprise me to find so many fans, nor did it surprise me to learn that these places are disappearing. So I figured I should get crackalacking on these things.

Note: I thought about eating the same “classic diner fare” at each and every one, but then came to realize that “classic diner fare” is apparently meat loaf. I don’t eat meatloaf. So I thought about having an egg salad sandwich at each one, assuming they all served it. Of course, this was AFTER I ordered something else at Collin’s… So I don’t think I’ll do that, and just concentrate more on the unique histories of each little restaurant.

Now, this is a hard list to maintain. These places not only close and re-open under different names, but they are also very transient. Yes, they move. Note: Again, I’m only interested in the classic diners, not those large 24-hour restaurants that call themselves diners. Here’s a massive list of every diner in Connecticut – more or less, which may be open or closed or moved or whatever.

My visits to Classic Connecticut Diners:

Collin’s Diner, North Canaan, 4/3/2010
Georgie’s Diner, West Haven, 8/4/2010
Zip’s Diner, Dayville/Killingly, 7/6/2011
Quaker Diner, West Hartford, 9/25/2012
Main Street Diner, Plainville, 2/20/2013
Aero Diner, North Windham, 8/23/2014
The Winsted Diner, Winsted, 10/25/2014

To Be Visited:

White’s Diner, Bridgeport
Norm’s Diner, Groton
O’Rourke’s Diner, Middletown
Miss Washington Diner, New Britain
Cody’s Diner, New Haven
Tandoor, New Haven
Olympia Diner, Newington
Blue Colony Diner, Newtown
Family Diner, Norwalk
Makris Diner, Wethersfield
Trolley Pub on Main, Willimantic

Skee’s Diner, TorringtonRestoration project

General classic diner info:

Yankee Magazine Top CT diners
Connecticut’s classic diners

5 responses to “Classic Diners”

  1. Ray Graves says:

    I am looking for the Devon (CT) Diner. Was near Washington Bridge in 1954…..Could be in Vermont..

  2. Ray Graves says:

    The Devon…(Milford)…Diner was closed after 1959. I do not know where it went but I would like know. If anyone knows please email me
    Thanks Ray

  3. Laura says:

    I’m not 100% sure Mickey’s is still open (I live pretty close so I can check). Definitely come out here for the Aero Diner though! We eat there every other week for Sunday breakfast, and since you use omelets as a gauge, I can tell you that they’re very good.

  4. Laura says:

    Checked out Mickey’s Diner (or, I should say, the former Mickey’s Diner) on Saturday. The silver vintage diner is still there, as is the badly peeling Big Boy statue; however, the diner now seems to be a bar extension of a larger building, which is called “Jonathan’s Cafe” and bills itself as “Willimantic’s Largest Dance Club,” not that there’s much competition for that. The windows are full of neon beer signs. I was there at around 11 a.m. so no signs of life were stirring, if the place is at all open and thriving. At any rate, it certainly doesn’t seem the sort of place to take impressionable young fellows for breakfast, so I’d advise you to steer clear.

    I do reinforce my comment above about coming out to the Aero Diner at some point, though–that diner’s in good shape, serves good food and is almost always full for breakfast (I can only advise you on Sundays, when I’d say you should come mid-morning, after the early rush and before the church crowd gets out).

  5. jack cratty says:

    I’ve recall it was moved to Bellows Falls, VT. Don’t know why. I too have many memories of eating there on Sunday with my dad. Understand it was torched by it’s owner and he was convicted of arson. Trying to confirm. Let me know if you get any info and I will do the same. just email me with your address. Thanks

Leave a Comment

The Out Campaign: Scarlet Letter of Atheism