Bob’s Diner, Manchester Center, VT
Bob’s Diner is on VT Route 11, in a rural area outside of Manchester. A sign at the road makes it easy to spot, and it is surrounded by an ample parking lot. The outside has an Art Deco look to it, with black and white check panels and silver trim. Inside, it had the standard counter plus tables and chairs and a jukebox. Some of the photos on the walls were cockeyed, and the interior seemed tired overall.
We were greeted and seated by a friendly waitress who was also doing her own busing while handling several tables, and at least one table remained uncleared for quite a while. They seemed understaffed for the number of tables plus counter, but we were there on a Thursday, and it’s possible the volume of business took them by surprise.
Our food took a while to arrive, and our waitress apologized, explaining that they had to call in Bob, the owner, to help at the grill.
BLT: My BLT was very good. The toasted whole wheat bread had a homemade quality to it, nice and thick. The bacon was generous and cooked just right, and it was accompanied by fresh Romaine lettuce, generous mayo, and slices of the usual off-season tomato. On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being excellent and 5 being average, I gave it (8).
Burger: Don’s burger was the usual chewy compressed ground beef purchased in patty form, cooked well-done as he requested. The golden, slightly crusty roll was better than average, and it came with lettuce, tomato, and raw onions, with relish, ketchup, and mustard on the side. He gave it (7).
French Fries: Don’s burger included French fries which were very tasty and nicely cooked. (8)
Dessert: Dessert turned into an adventure when the waitress announced that they had a new baker, and they would be interested in feedback. Unfortunately, Don’s coconut cream pie was exceptionally dry, with more emphasis on the coconut than on the cream, and he did not finish it. The waitress did not seem surprised and kindly marked it as no charge.
BLT: $5.95, included chips and two pickle slices
Burger: $5.95, included lettuce, tomato, raw onions, condiments, and French fries
Root beer: $1.75
Total bill before taxes and gratuity: $15.40
Restrooms: Unisex, large, well-lit, and clean. Nothing fancy, but well-maintained. (10)
Service: Understaffed but cheerful and friendly. (8)
Overall experience: 8
2279 Depot St.
Manchester Center, VT 05255