The Original Phil's Diner, Newport
A shiny new sign on Newport High Street reveals the presence of another new eating-place, so Matt and Cat are quick to take advantage. But wait - what's this? It looks familiar. Very familiar.
Original Phil's Diner turns out to be the former Top of The Town Diner, and there's been little change inside except for the ubiquitous Phil's branding. Not a bad move, as Top of the Town had completely refurbished the place in a very stylish American Diner pastiche and then promptly - and mercifully - closed down. So other than a new name there was little else needing attention in the décor - although Matt and Cat found Top of The Town sadly wanting in other respects when they visited it: even a real juke box and giant pictures of Katherine Hepburn don't really make up for dismal food and lackadaisical service. So let's forget about them.
Enter The Original Phil. It's unclear whether it is Phil himself who is original, or merely his diner, but either way his name is on everything, including every dish on the menu. Ownership, at least, is thus clearly established. Originality might be harder to demonstrate, especially given the preceding, apparently identical establishment. But with such an poor act to follow, could Phil really go wrong? Matt, Cat and junior reviewer Bill went to find out.
Original Phil's looks bright and welcoming, and really makes the effort with the 1950's diner styling. Even the staff are all uniformed, and whilst the cheerleader-style waitress didn't actually have rollerboots on, one felt that she probably wanted them. Massive posters of movie stars graced the walls, and the seats were shiny vinyl benches. Matt, Cat and Bill sat themselves beneath the glowering visage of Cary Grant, and took a look at the menu. It wasn't complicated, and bore all the stuff you'd expect, all prefixed with 'Phil's', or, in some cases 'The Original Phil's'. Once more the trio pondered the difference between Phil and Original Phil. An entertaining feature of the menu was 'Phil's Challenge': for £12 a gluttonous diner could try to consume four steak burgers and a portion of chunky chips and, if successful and still alive, win a free Phil's Diner tee-shirt. But where could such a gluttonous diner be found? Cat and Bill looked at Matt expectantly, but even he demurred, choosing instead to order a comparable meal to the one he had at Top of The Town: Original Phil's Quarter Pounder Steakburger. Bill, inspired, chose the same. Cat had eaten scrambled egg on toast at Top of The Town. This was an off-menu choice then and so it remained now - so how would Phil's manage the challenge? Matt went up to order the meals, and discussed the possibility of scrambled egg with the chef himself who was more than happy to oblige. Matt returned with three massive mugs of splendid builders'-style tea and after a suitable interlude, the meals arrived via the cheerleader.
But disaster! Cat's scrambled egg turned out to be fried. Immediate representations were made, which led to a prompt response from Phil's Diner: the chef himself left the sizzling griddle and rushed over, full of apologies. He blamed himself, he couldn't think how it had happened. He begged Cat for the opportunity to scramble some eggs, but, Cat-like as ever, she refused and decided to eat the perfectly-cooked fried eggs instead. Still, it was an honest mistake and Phil's Diner dealt with it excellently. It's amazing how a complaint can turn into a compliment when handled professionally like this.
So, what of the chaps? Bill and Matt both looked at their Original Phil's Quarter Pounder Steakburger with a little dismay. These burgers were tiddly little things - hardly three inches across*. Each came garnished with a single lettuce leaf, on which three slivers of tomato were precariously balanced. Matt also eyed the meat with great suspicion - these irregular-shaped patties looked very similar to the noxious ones that Top of The Town had served him previously. Still, putting all that behind him, Matt took a nibble of the burger. His suspicions immediately melted away. This was a great burger - meaty and chunky and with a great taste. Far better, in fact, than an average beefburger. It seems that a steakburger is no empty marketing label: this burger was actually made from steak. Bill, similarly, was very pleased with his burger. He remarked with characteristic gnomic wit that this was where Phil's Diner's close adhesion to its American holotype fell down - the burgers, though small, were excellent. But without a doubt if the lads had known the size of the burger they'd both have chosen instead the alarmingly-named Original Phil's Belly Buster Steakburger, which was apparently two burgers, might not have looked so disappointingly titchy on the plate, and still would have been a reasonable price.
2x steakburger £7.00
Eggs and toast £2.50
3x tea £3.00
So Original Phil's effortlessly lifts the tarnished crown from the fallen Top of The Town. This place has changed. It is now a decent café, even a decent diner. The prices are very reasonable, the food is good, and the service is friendly. Worth a visit.
*M&C don't claim any credit for it, but a follow-up visit in 2010 confirms that the burgers now served are significantly bigger, but still have that splendid meaty taste. Still well worth it. Oh, and 'Bellybuster' seems to have gone from the menu.
86 comments (newest first)
Under new ownership - much cleaner, great service and cinnamon toast is amazing
Went into Phil’s today for meatloaf - absolutely fantastic! My mum used to make meatloaf when I was a child but this is waaaaay better (sorry mum love you!!)
I love Phils Diner!!!
i went to phils diner the other day. had a fantastic breakfast with all the trimmings and a big mug of decaf coffee.
couldn’t fault the service, or the price . lovely comfy seating .
this is now my favourite place to go
I forgot to mention that after our bad meal at Original Phils diner I had to go to Mcdonalds after leaving my meal and the cheese burger there had more taste to it.
Today my boyfriend and I went for a bite to eat at ‘Original Phil’s Diner’ and were both extremely disappointed. My boyfriend ordered the standard breakfast and I ordered the cheese steak burger and curly fries. Within 15 minuted the food was served and it looked small for what you pay for. I thought this was suppose to be an American diner?
The breakfast was very basic but the big problem was my steak burger and fries.
In the menu it states that you get a side salad and have to pay extra for fries which I was quite happy to do, but when the food arrived I had curly fries and a burger. I opened the bun to put some Ketchup inside and there was a huge lump of half melted cheese and it tasted foul, the burger didn’t taste much better either, don’t get me wrong it was cooked but well overdone it was burnt and tasteless. The curly fries were crunchy and small. I ended up leaving half of it to be honest as it was making me feel ill. Even the hot chocolate was the cheap powdered hot chocolate which is bad considering it cost me £2.00
When Original Phils diner first opened it was awesome but a year later it went down hill, the portions started getting smaller but the prices went up so we didn’t go there for a year or so until today and I am never going back there again it was FOUL!
What a fantastic place!!!
It’s like stepping back to the fifties/sixties - this venue is incredible!
Wonderful food, brilliant service, great atmosphere - its all here. Gorgeous waitress (tattoo’ed though - I wonder if they bank with NatWest?!)
Altogether the perfect package, particularly if you need perking up. Can’t recommend it enough! X
Felt compelled to write as this is a gem that is often missed. Being on the island for 3years, no one has ever mentioned this place so fell across it accidentally.
After ordering the chilli dog, bowl of curly fries and a steak burger, we were of course, pleased to see all the old un’s on the menu, the root beer float (which is not for the faint hearted if you dislike the smell of antiseptic or the dentist) Mountain Dew, Pepsi cherry and strawberry fanta, not to mention nerds and Oreos, pop tarts that only the Americans do, popping candy was an eye watering treat. The milkshake list rivals a whole McDonald’s menu with its varieties and flavours, it took longer to choose than drink!
Food arrived prompt, despite it being busy, with really friendly staff and silence fell among the table for about 5 minutes. Then the unfamiliar mmmmmm and hmmmmm and ferocious nodding of acceptance towns the food. It was absolutely Devine anda real treat. Being able to explain to the kids who the golden oldies were on the wall, what a juke box was and where candy comes alive, even they were on board.
Well done phils diner for one of the best kept eating secrets in Newport if not the IOW! Will deifinately be coming again, bringing visiting friends and family, but have to say may be very selfish and not share the love for fear of not getting a seat!!!
My Husband and I popped into Phil’s Diner for a quick cuppa and loved every minute! Very friendly welcoming staff! Great atmosphere (great music in the background via the stunning Jukebox) fantastic selection of American sweets and cereals. The kitchen was bustling and Phil’s Diner obviously has a great team of employees. Tables were cleaned regularly and even with the high turnover of diners it looked clean and tidy. Fascinating selection of milkshakes! Nice mixture of ages and obviously has something that appeals to everyone. Checked menu looked delicious and on our return to Newport and when we have more time we will definitely be trying a burger! (Lovely owners who have at least responded on this blog… Says a lot really)
We came to Phil’s Diner ahead of watching the Olympic Torch relay through Newport, and had a great Full English Veggie B’fast, and a 2 eggs on toast. Excellent food, freshly cooked. There was so much on Mr A’s b’fast plate, that I helped him out, pinching half a veggie sausage (which had good taste and texture for a change), and a forkful of tomato/mushrooms/hash brown. He still had the rest, plus baked beans, fried bread and toast to work through. The diner was busy, but tables were being cleared and cleaned immediately people left. I tried to use my M&C Dining Club card for the discount, but forgot it was only valid Monday to Friday. However, the lovely lady gave me a discount anyway - very kind! Lovely place - can’t understand the negative comments.
As a regular, I cannot understand the kicking that Phil’s Diner is getting on this website. My wife and I - both retired - have been coming here regularly for the last twelve months and we think it’s great! Great food, great staff, lovely owner. And the price is very good too.
Me and my boyfriend visited Phil’s Diner today, and it is no more than a greasy spoon cafe. Don’t get me wrong, the hot dog and curly fries I ordered, along with a milkshake were lovely. However my boyfriends bacon and cheese burger was tough and tasteless. And the whole diner was absoutely disgustingly dirty. Stains on with windows and walls, food all over the floor and menu’s. My boyfriend had to ask for our table to be cleaned to which the waitress replied ’sorry, its been busy.’ There were only 5 tables full at this point. And the cutlery was ever more disgusting. I had to leave as soon as I finished my food. My mother is in the catering industy and I know for a fact she’d have a serious warning or even be shut down if her business got to this state. The staff need to understand the seriousness of being clean.
I thought I’d treat my wife to a cooked breakfast at Phil’s….what a mistake!
After ordering and getting our mugs of tea, we had to wait for nearly half an hour to finally be given two plates of food. At first glance the Full English breakfast looked small and unappetizing. On closer inspection things got worse. The bacon was cold (yes, not even tepid but stone cold), although it did look as though it had been cooked once, in the distant past. The minuscule portion of ‘baked’ beans looked as though they had been well and truly baked (a few times over). That was enough. I could look no further so returned the food immediately and was told it had been a long day (it was only 2.30pm).
To their credit the staff apologized and offered replacements or a refund. I couldn’t bring myself to wait for more inedible food so took the refund.
I found the staff quite friendly but this does not make up for the atrocious meal that was offered. Long day or not, if you can’t stand the heat (or cook a decent breakfast), get out of the kitchen. It looks like it was Friday 13th all round. We didn’t get our breakfast and Phil’s Diner lost two customers!
REally?! I have heard nothing but amazing reviews for Phil’s. So finnaly me and a group of friends got to try it.
Service… Service with a smile!? The lady who took our orders at the till was so misserable, and come across very rude.
Phil’s Diner: Disgusting!!! When i sat at my table it was greasy and sticky and there was food on the floor, I figured that this was possibly due to the fact they were an hour and a half away from closing and was very hungry and didnt think much more into it at that point…
It was after i had orderd and i was standing around at the till for my friends that i had a proper look around, it filthy in there, The menus were covered in sticky greasy and god knows what, the sauce bottles were covered in bits of food ( c’mon it doesn’t take much to wipe everything down once in a while.) The kitchen that you can clearly see was disgusting and i think they should be ashamed of themselves.
Then comes the cutlery.. Oh dear god!we had to sift through the lot not to find some without dried on food! it was disgusting
Drinks were fine, although when i ordered my cup of tea, and pointed out the jug of milk asking if i used that i got a ‘grunt’
But the food was a let down, i don’t know why everyone is raving about these burgers? they were dry and worst of all i had to send my one back as it was stone cold!!! i had chilli burger, i sent it back and they had reheated it the burger and replaced the chilli inside. it concerned me a bit, and didnt finish it.
My friend had some spicy Mexican cheese in his and they didn’t even bother melting the cheese on so you can imagine how dry and rubbish that was.
I basically came away feeling disgusted grossed out, and a little bit dirty! Lol i would actually rather sit in mcD’s and come away feeling better about it, and thats saying something!
I Wonder when there last hygiene inspection was!
Was there with 2 friends on Easter Monday.
Nothing special. Cheap, deep fried sausages.
SteakBurger & Chips:
I’d seen a raw burger when ordering at the counter and it looked really good. Shame that when it arrived at the table it had been very over cooked and was very tough.
Burger well overcooked as above. Pancake more like a flat sponge cake(Dry).
One guest commented that the Heinz mayonnaise bottle on the table was probably a cheaper brand.
Our second visit to Phil’s, both following recommendations on this site.
Clearly the place is thriving. We went on Easter Monday. Newport was dead, Phil’s was packed.
After a short wait for a table and another wait to order, we had a very long wait for the drinks to arrive, but they had run out of peanut butter (for the milk shakes) and had popped out for some, which was great service (shame they hadnt told us as we thought we had been forgotten).
Food took a very long time to come (they seemed over stretched) but four of the five in our group enjoyed a very good meal. Unfortunately, my burger was overlooked and, as a result, was tasteless, dry and tough.
In summary, great ambiance, fantastic menu, friendly service and (if not busy) great food. The stretched staff were good humoured, but missing the finer details, like cleaning tables properly, clearing up food that had been dropped on the floor, communicating with customers over delays etc.
As a result of the delays, we were lucky not to have incurred two £70 parking fines as we ran over by 30 minutes. Thankfully we were lucky, probably helped by it being a Bank Holday, but ended up with indigestion rushing back to the cars, which rather spoilt the experience.
I hope that they learn to cope better when under pressure as I really want this place to do well as it is a great concept and Newport lacks good places to eat..
We hadn’t eaten at Phil’s Diner for a while following a not great experience with some very burnt/oily cinnamon toast (which we had very much enjoyed in the past). Thought we would have another go as we have had really enjoyable previous trips. A 35 minute wait once ordered (which I don’t really mind if the food when it arrives is hot and what we ordered) the hash browns were luke warm and when cutting them the oil was visible, in total about 6 slices of button mushroom and no beans (we ordered a vege breakfast which includes) and an additional 50p for scrambled egg instead of fried. I didn’t even feel I could complain as there was very much a ‘general can’t bothered’ there didn’t appear to be anyone in charge either on the grill or front of house, the service was at best mediocre which is a shame as in the past it is has been good. It just felt like no one cared anymore, lots of bits of food debris on the floor (it was fairly early in the morning) hope they sort things out.
OMG best burgers on the Island! Always have been, but even better now that Ed the Chef is full time (hi Edd!)
Food here is AMAZING - and I agree with Annie that this is what reviews should be about. Seriously, the best place for a burger on the Island, SERIOUSLY!
if your new to the site, don’t listen to the negative comments (who I think have there own agenda anyway) Phils is IT. Try anything on there menu and let your mouth fall in love…!!!
What a pity this website has turned into a bitching blog, I’d rather hear about the food.
I will say that as always the food is brilliant and the service is always great. The atmosphere in here is much better this year, all the staff look genuinely happy and th blonde waitress is bubbly as always. I hope the next review will be about the FOOD X
Ate at Phil’s on Saturday and have to say I cant agree with negative comments above. Had a 12oz Texan burger with fries and it tasted fantastic (always does!) Served by a blonde lady who I dont think is the owner but she was really friendly and attentive. Good price, great service and, as I say, fantastic food, if anything it’s got even better of late. I’m with Matt and Cat on this one, I guess a couple of you guys were just unlucky.
I too agree with Adam and have discoverd that the food is not as good as it used to be and the service i received is not as good as they were six months ago. come on guys - we know you can be good. what’s changed? all i’ve noticed is the staff seemed to have swapped days around and the lady chef hasn’t been in there for a while. does she still work there?
i think that matt and cat should revisit the diner and re-review the place in light of all of these recent comments.
Matt and Cat respond: we are regular visitors to Phil’s, and we know a few people who are also very enthusiastic patrons. We most recently visited last Sunday. If we encounter anything that would make us change our review, of course we’d do so. However our experiences have almost entirely been consistent with the initial, very favourable impression. And yes, that does include the service. So the original review stands. Nonetheless one of the aims of this website is for everyone to make their views known, so feel free to do so.
I can add to the comments about long wait times and poor customer service in managing them.
I visited the diner last year and ordered 2 burgers - I was told by the lady (Dawne I believe) at the time there would be a short delay as they were cooked to order but after waiting 30 minutes I asked if they would be long. I was told ‘I said you’d have to wait for them’.
The food was nice enough, certainly a step up from the usual island pub/ cafe standard but I haven’t been back due to the service
I just wanted to say that me and my wife have eaten at phils diner for about a year, about once a month, then all of a sudden as of 2012 the quality of the restaurant has fallen dramatically, our food took close to 40minutes to be preprepared and brought to us despite the fact that it was not overly busy in there, when we asked how long we could expect to wait we were told ‘i don’t know’ when we did finally receive our food the quality of it was terrible in comparison of what we have come to expect,
we will venture back sometime later in the year to see if it has improved but after the service we received last week we wont be rushing back!
I am really sorry, but I am going to leave a negative comment on the customer service received at Phil’s Diner today.
My partner and I were looking forward to eating there as we have been a number of times before and the service/food had been fantastic. We ordered our burgers and chips at 12:50pm. My partner and I were deep in conversation and when I glanced at the clock realised 40 minutes had passed and we still had no food. We decided to give it another 10 minutes - although it was very busy in there and there was only one chef. When my partner approached the chef to express his disatisfaction and ask how much longer we would have to wait, the chef did not apologise, just asked my partner ‘what am i expected to do?’. The chef explained that he was just about to put our burger and chips on and that it could be a while, to that my partner asked for a refund.
The owner of the diner was sat with what I would think was her son and his friends (as he spoke very loud and I did hear him refer to her as mum). One of the owner’s son’s friends was stood near my partner at the time he challenged the chef…as I was sat near the owner I could hear the girl tell her what had happened. Dawne made no effort to approach the chef and ask what was happening, which in my experience as a senior member of staff in a customer service role I would have done.
I appreciate the Diner was very busy, but we would have been more understanding if one of the waitresses had approached either ours or any other customer’s tables to explain that there would be a delay and/or apologise.
Its a shame really because my family loved eating at this Diner before receiving the poor customer service we did today.
Thank you for reading my comment.
What a shame that someones spiteful remarks have put you off visiting!
I have eaten here several times and as an ex smoker I would have known if someone had been smoking inside, there was not even a hint of stale smoke in the air.
Please don’t be put off, it’s a great place to eat.
Dear Marcus and Dawne
I am coming to Isle of Wight next week and The Original Phil’s Diner was recommended to me (along with this site to have a look at what it is like).
It looks like a lovely place but I am sorry to say, I do have an issue with smoking. I was wondering if the matter discussed got resolved?
I have ticked Allow message form so I can be contacted directly. That way all the comments don’t have to clog up this forum.
Thank you for your help.
Went here for the first time a couple of weeks ago have to say as someone who loves all things american it would always appeal. Food wise it was OK and would happily return however tiny little moan please keep the sauce bottles topped up or dont have them virtually every bottle I picked up was empty including those by the till. The bun my burger arrived with was icy cold, which meant the cheese remained a solid lump of grated cheeses as opposed to melting quickly once I assembled the burger so would suggest you offer to toast them, curly fries were possibly just not to my taste as quite greasy my husband ate them all but not for me I’m afraid. Will come again and sample different food next time…we wish you luck
I love Phil’s Diner. If it wasn’t for these times of austerity and my desire not to swell to the size of a house I would happily have my lunch there every day. The prices are more than fair, the staff are friendly and chatty and food is always excellent - It really is a fun and friendly place to eat. I have recently even taken to using it as a venue for business lunches! Keep up the good work!
Went for an early Sunday Brunch there this morning. Wife and I had a full English, cooked to absolute perfection. Despite all the American imagery and burgers and whatnot, this place also does a really good fried breakfast. My wife doesn’t drink tea or coffee but the staff were happy to offer up either coke or orange juice in place at no extra cost - Hats Off! Will definitely be back; as my ol’ American mate Barney Stinson puts it: ‘Phils Up, Dude!’
Thank you so much for your kind recommendation. We’re very lucky to have a strong vegetarian contingent, given the ‘feel’ of the place as a burger bar, and welcome any suggestions that our vegetarian customers make. Have had a couple of requests for a homemade vegetarian chilli, so watch this space!
Really glad you enjoyed the food! Sorry about the Ska music - the Jukebox is awaiting repair and so our chef took it upon himself to bring in a Bose at maximum volume! (Maybe we need to remove ze cheese from HIS ears!)
A couple of regular customers remarked to me that they had observed someone smoking in the Diner late one evening. It transpired that whilst we were having our kitchen equipment serviced one evening, the subcontracting team thought that it was okay to smoke as the Diner was closed. Needless to say, we have brought it to the attention of the firm we employed and they have assured us that it will not be happening again!
It’s December (so soon!) and so, in a nod to the festive spirit, we are reintroducing our now-famous Turkey Burger, made from fresh turkey breast with stuffing and cranberry sauce, as well as our own Christmas milkshake. Ho ho ho!!!
Love to all,
I recently visited Original Phil’s Diner on a recent trip across to the Isle of Wight. The food was fantastic, and well worth the review you gave. However, I’m not so sure I want to return - I was walking past one evening on my way back to my hotel and saw a couple smoking at the far end of the kitchen. Now, I have nothing against smokers, but I don’t think it’s a very good advert for the cafe.
Had lunch here yesterday, and must say I enjoyed it - the 6 oz hawiian(?)burger was great value for money. Couple of gripes though - the bacon wasn’t crispy enough (I detest fatty bacon!), and the music was far too loud. I know this is an American diner, and would enjoy a bit of Rock n Roll in the background; but SKA music at ear blistering volumes? I think it actually detracts from the atmosphere of an otherwise vibrant and fun place. I will definately go again, but maybe with ’some cheese for ze ears’….
My girlfriend and I have recently stumbled across phils diner. I am a vegetarian (altho at 6ft7 and anything but skinny not the usual kind) and have found this to be the best place for breakfast and lunch I’ve ever been. They have a great selection of food for me and I am doing my best to try them all. The best thing about phils however has to be the milkshakes!! I’m addicted. Phils is the total package. Very friendly staff, great food and drinks and great prices. Infact I’m so hungry writing this I think it’s time for a quick visit. Best cafe on the island bar none!!
Thank you for your comments - it is so important for us to hear customer views in all their glory, whether complementing or criticizing.
The sausages are definitely not horrible cheap supermarket ones, they are prime pork catering sausages. They are fried, but that is the way most of our customers like them and, being an open kitchen, it would be difficult for us to add additional equipment to allow us to, say, grill them all. Your reference to CA (2010) is interesting, not least because at that time we were using Lincolnshire pork sausages from Hamiltons ( we now use another independent butcher).
My apologies that you found the black pudding below par - it is bought in fresh (never frozen) and is fried - it should always have the crumbly consistency to which you refer. I am pleased that you found the overall breakfast to be fulfilling and I appreciate that you were full up but if ever you, or anyone else, finds anything in our food to be falling below standard, you should definitely always tell us. My staff and I are trained to understand individual customer requirements and will always seek to rectify any issues that you bring to our attention.
I’m very glad that you intend to return and look forward to hearing your experience of trying our fresh steak chilli. May I also recommend our cinnamon toast and our American steak breakfast - the US may be terrible at international relations but we believe that our take on their food is well worth trying! Once again, thank you for your frank comments - I sincerely hope you’ll give us another go!
I popped into this pleasant establishment today for a ‘big breakfast’ and it realy is big and at a fair price which came with a big mug of tea.
A good breakfast but let down (again - see comment from CA 25/8/2010) by the sausages - they were those horrible frozen cheap supermarket ones which just don’t seem cooked on the inside (and I suspect they were deep fried - not the best way to cook sausages). I know I could have complained, but to be honest I couldn’t eat any more! Everything else was ok - even the dried mushrooms and the rather stodgy black pudding (I know its not regarded around these parts, but a good black pudding should be fried or grilled and have a sort of crumbly texture to it in my opinion).
Could do better, but I will be back and maybe try some of the American stuff - I do love chillis!
Thank you for your kind comments - you and/or your entourage are most welcome whenever you visit the island. Following our chat, did you get a venue on the Island? I’m afraid that, because of work, I rarely get out of Newport but would love to hear your band next time you’re Island-bound!
Dear Helen & H,
‘Twas I the owner that supplied the Lime Crusha - does it stil taste as good as you remember? Really pleased that you liked my Diner so much, can’t wait to see you again.
Thank you for recommending Catherine and her band to the Diner.
On a new note, my husband and I have opened a second place in Newport, called Metro. I won’t do the big sell (because as independents I know you wouldn’t buy it anyway!) but we’re very pleased with the place. It;s a take-off of Subway (as the name suggests!) but we also do wraps, salad bowls, breakfasts, and a full menu of different coffees, milkshakes et al. As opposed to a typical Newport sandwich bar (of which there are loads) we hope to provide a more deli-style, along with very competitive prices and the same high level of customer service one can expect to receive from the Diner. Would love you both to come along and cast your renowned eyes over it!
Take care all!
Dawne x x x
Lovely food, very friedly staff. All our requirements were met, nothing was any trouble. Special thanks to the lady we beleive was the owner for the Crusha lime! Will definitely call again when we visit the Island.
First the background: Having asked Mat & Cat to recommend a Sunday breakfast venue in Newport for 40 hungry, possibly hungover members of Woodley Concert Band - we were pointed at The Original Phil’s Diner.
Accommodating our request for an early 9am opening, band members flocked to the diner and rapidly filled it! Dawne and her team coped amazingly with the sudden deluge, despite being a member of staff down. Between us, I think all breakfast options were sampled - including the extra large full English breakfast (but not the breakfast challenge!). We have only praise for the food, the prices and the atmosphere. Many people said they would be back on their next trip to the island. Dawne, Amy and the rest of the team were so accommodating - even providing a cake free of charge to celebrate one of our member’s birthday. Thanks Dawne, and thanks Mat for the perfect recommendation.
Dear Kev and Caz,
Thank you for your kind remarks and congratulations Kev on successfully completing the challenge! Even my husband tried the challenge recently and failed (he always moans when someone completes it since the T-shirts cost more than the meal but I rather think it’s just sour grapes!) I hope, Caz, your sister enjoyed our hospitality and thank you both for the recommendation.
I’m so glad you enjoyed your birthday at Phil’s and are coming back again this year - let me know when you’re coming in for your 15th and we’ll arrange a little surprise for you! Good luck with the challenge!
Meanwhile, we have now joined the exclusive Matt and Cat Dining Card Scheme and are offering all members a buy-one-get-one-free on our meals (Monday to Friday, T&C’s of some sort apply!). So please check out our latest menu on facebook and let your mouth fall in love! (Hopefully, anyway!)
Dawne x x x
I went to Phil’s diner for my 14th Birthday last year, and it was brilliant!
The food was very reasonably priced, and the service was excellent. I loved the chocolate milkshake- I was expecting just a normal milkshake, but it came in a massive tall glass with cream and everything!
For my 15th Birthday in a couple of months, me and my friends are coming back- and this time I am am going to attempt the burger challenge… and I like my chances.
I want to be an owner of that t-shirt…
and to prove to my friends how much I can really eat :L
Once again, thank you for the great service and food, and wish me luck for my challenge!
Dawne, we recently visited the diner and were extremely impressed with the politeness of the staff and the quality of food. I (Kev) even attempted the burger challenge and I am now the proud owner of a phil’s diner t-shirt after completing my mammoth challenge. We’ve recommended the diner to family and friends who may be visiting the island and Caz’s sister will be there next week. Once again thank you for a great dining experience - Kev and Caz (East Midlands)
Dear Jo, thanks for your comments. Be sure to point yourself out to me when you come over in July, I’m in most days!
Dear Midlands Mark, as you can see from Matt and Cat’s uploaded map (thank you Matt and Cat!) we are at the top of the high street in newport, number 81. We’re also accessible from the top of Pyle Street where both roads meet.
Unfortunately we don’t have a website yet but you can find us on facebook (The Original Phil’s Diner). It’s still in its infancy but we should have a full menu up soon and you can currently check out photos/opening times etc.
Take care all,
Love, Dawnie x x
This place sounds great - but whereabouts in Newport is it?!?
Addresses would be good.
Dawn - you need a website!
Matt and Cat respond:
View Larger Map
What fantastic reviews. Can’t wait to bring my family for a visit during our holiday in July. It’s lovely that Dawne responds to customers comments. Looking forward to leaving a proper review after our visit. See you in July.
36oz Steakburger Meal!! Sounds like a challenge for MATT!!!!
Matt responds: I’ve seen a Phil’s Challenge underway, and let me tell you Nick, I WAS TERRIFIED. I’ve been limbering up for a couple of years now, but I’m not in that league yet. If I ever see anyone wearing one of those shirts, I’ll raise my hat as a mark of genuine respect and admiration.
Happy New Year Everyone!
Thank you all for your comments - once again, it’s so nice to receive feedback on how we’re doing.
New Year - New Menu! We have extensively widened our menu to include twelve (12!) different burgers, all made from fresh meat on site and available as either 6oz or 12oz. Steak, chicken, pork, vegetarian - you name it, we’ve got it! (Probably!)
As from 1st February, we will also be introducing our Happy Hour menu, available from 3.30 on weekdays. Meal deals, to include mains, side and a drink for only £3.69. How can we do it???
For all us milkshake fans, we now have over 30 different flavours and are constantly open to suggestions - challenge us to make the shake of your dreams!
Finally, we have extended our ‘challenge’ range to include the Ultimate Breakfast and a 36oz SteakBurger meal - we dare you to eat the lot in return for one of our coveted Phil’s Diner T-shirts!
See you there!
Dawnie x x x x
Went in today for a breakfast and sat their reading my paper waiting, watching everyone being served and before I knew it I had been there for 45 minutes and still no breakfast.
I asked the lady serving if it would be much longer (last minute Christmas shopping to do) and she went to check, came back and said sorry but there had been a mix up and my order had been given to another table, by this point I was really not happy, yes the place was really busy with people even waiting for tables but 45 minutes was not great. But I have to say the way it was handled from this point was first class.
the cook came over while they started my order again and apologised and explained the mix up, he then brought my breakfast over with a ‘few extra bits’ as a sorry, then the lady serving brought me over a free coffee.
The food itself was freshly cooked and very yummy, the bacon was really nicely done.
Went to Phil’s Diner today - 2nd December - (in the snow) with my two daughters, both off school due to weather.
Ordered a full english and two kids breakfasts which came out after a short while. The owner’s husband explained that they had had loads of takeout orders as they werer almost the only place open in town today. Food was fantastic. Then another member of staff gave the kids sweets, on the understanding that they would finish their breakfast, for free. Then they were given half price hot chocolate drinks “because of the weather". Is this place for real, I thought? Then the owner, Dawn, gave me a free refill of coffee to keep the cold out. And it wasn’t just us. Everyone got extra hot drinks. It was as though the place was being run as a friendly club rather than a business.
I have to take my hat off to this place. Nobody else would of gone so far to keep theior customers happy. It was as though we were all in it together, with the terrible weather outside and us in the warm - like the war or something.
Thank you Dawn and the Phil’s Diner team for being so kind. It is moments of kindness like this that make us customers coming back, to know that we feel valued and important. My kids and I will be back every week forever!
Lots of love, Steph x xx
hi is phil’s diner expensive i am planing on going there with my friend tomorrow and we will be getting something for lunch like a burger it something can you tell me how much i should bring (including drinks) ASAP thanks x
Matt and Cat respond: Luckily for you, the information is already in the review. Do feel free to go and read it for yourself, ASAP. Oh, and if you take £15 you will have plenty for two of you - if you take £10 you will not go hungry either.
As Dawne didn’t put the link for Phil’s facebook group here it is :)
Matt and Cat respond: Hi Nick, thanks for the link. We’ve added it to Dawne’s comments too.
Thank you all for your latest batch of comments; I tend to use this website as a gauge for the general feeling of the Diner and it all seems pretty good!
Hi Natalie, thank you for your kind words. I think I remember you coming in last time - your son had a fire truck?
Hi Aaron. I have to say I was left somewhat aghast at your comments re. the good food guide. It would be nice to think that such a thing could happen but… …well, we’ll see!
Hi Jacqui, you’re quite right, Phil’s Diner is not part of a chain. It’s all my own work (with the staff). So glad you love our milkshakes, it’s become something of a specialty!
Thank you Mat for your comments. I appreciate your point about the kids drinks (although they are very popular) and so now, we also offer fresh orange juice or milk as an accompaniment to any kids meal. I hope you and your family will come back and give us the chance to rectify your concerns.
Dear CA, so unfortunate that you had one of our ‘reserve’ sausages - it so happened that our usual supplier let us down on Monday 23rd August and we simply had to have something! The sausages you ate were nonetheless still 100% pork (from a local supplier and they actually cost more!) but I do take your point. I hope you’ll return and try for yourself our ‘normal’ standard of sausage!
Hi Julie, glad you loved your Phil’s Diner experience. The Diner is called ‘Phil’s’ because (and here’s the secret) Phil Sandercock, the owner of Wheatsheaf Homes, undertook the project to renovate the Diner before we opened. In a (slightly) drunken offer, my husband offered to name the place after him if he completed the project on time (something for which builders are not generally known) but Phil came up with the goods and thus his name stands as our name! As an aside, Phil also helped with the setting up and running of the Diner in its early days, but that’s another story.
Hi Kya! No, we don’t currently have a website, although we will have by next spring. But you can look us up on facebook in the meantime and become a friend of Phil’s!
Lastly, before turning to more serious matters, I would like to thank Matt and Cat for elevating our Diner to one of their favourites. When I first saw that we were one of the (currently) six favourite venues, I must admit I felt a little tearful! I regard it as a massive tribute to our staff, to our venue and to our extensive menu (gosh, this is beginning to sound like an Oscar speech). Incidentally, Matt, we know that you love all things spicy - so just to let you know that our latest Burger of the Month is a ‘Tex-Mex’ - pure steak marinated in a Texas hot sauce, topped with Jalepino peppers and a blend of Mexcan Chilli cheese! (Handmade by me). I would love for you to come and roadtest it and give me your thoughts!
Now, on a more serious note,
I am honoured to announce that, from 29th October, Phil’s Diner is launching its own campaign in support of the hospice. This year alone, the hospice will help and care for over 800 Islanders at a cost of £2.2 million - they receive no central government funding (a travesty) - and so anything we can all do together to further their mission is the very least that we, as Islanders, can do.
Everyone gets personally touched by cancer at some point in their life. It’s an absolute tragedy.
With all this in mind, Phil’s Diner has decided to do something quite unique. Last year, we had a great many requests for Christmas parties. We have no alcohol licence, so we simply charged for staff and running costs and as a result, groups that wanted a Christmas party got the entire Diner - exclusively - for the evening for a small charge and brought their own drinks. This year, we intend to charge the same for hiring the Diner (about £35 per hour fully staffed) and all parties can bring their own drinks, without paying corkage, except that this time there is one major difference. The entire hire charge, each evening, will be donated to the Hospice. All of it. Full stop. My husband and I, and our staff, will work unpaid for this extremely necessary - essential - cause. Please support it, whether there are ten of you or fifty, and book your Christmas party at Phil’s. Thank you x.
Lots of love and (can you believe it) Merry Christmas (!!)
Dawne x x x
I love phils diner do they have a website??
Phil’s Diner is amazing. Waffles, milkshakes, pancakes, American drinks, they have everything. They have Lucky Charms by the bowl, I havent seen these since I was about 6. The staff are incredably friendly, dressed up in amazing uniforms with a jukebox in the background. We got talking to Dawn who gets all her stuff in from America and she says she can get anything we want from there, how cool, is that?
We all recken they should open at night but Dawn said there was no call for it. This is so wrong!!! I love this place and would recomend it to everyone who reads this, yay Phil’s!
P.S. If your the owner Dawn then why is it called Phils? xx xx
I had a lovely breakfast with some of the best cinnamon toast I’ve ever had - sugary, sirupy, and soft. My only gripe is that compared to the quality of everything else the breakfast sausages felt a bit ‘budget supermarket’. Looking forward to trying the waffles next time I’m on the island - and working my way through the rest of the menu.
I love lime milkshakes, always have done, but they seem to have disappeared off the face of the planet, until a friend of mine said they did them at Phil’s Diner. So I went there and, yes, there was a lime milkshake but was astounded to find that there was about another thirty flavours! Including one called ‘fried breakfast’ milkshake which is literaly a fried breakfast made into a shake!!
Spoke to the waitress and ordered a lime milkshake and a raspberry mallowfluff milkshake for my boyf - they came out in a massive glass with cream, sauce and a flake! Its one of those OMG moments when everyone in the Diner looks over at what youve ordered and says ‘I want one of those too!’
This place is brilliant and is a undiscovered gem here on the island. I understand its not part of a chain but is a one off and the way the place is laid out is fantastic. As Matt and Cat say, well worth a visit!
Having never before visited the Island, I find myself potentially cowering under the sharpened teeth of the local populace at my sheer bravado in proffering a review of one of your clearly hallowed lunchtime venues.
My defence is that I was referred to the excellent Matt and Cat website by a friend who lives in Cowes and who suggested that I might further my culinary analysis of the generally wretched hamburger by visiting one location that appears to have nailed the problem of low quality frozen meat pulp masquerading as ‘home-made cuisine’ by actually making apparently genuine steak burgers on site, not en masse.
My friends, I have to tell you that I was not disappointed. Far from it. Like a sole-trading star shining out against a sea of corporate blackness, this particular venue rages with the passion of Vesuvius, a veritable cauldron of gastronomic greatness. Within the confines of a burger bar, you understand.
An array of American delights are a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach. A plethora of hitherto-unknown (to English palattes at least) sodas are complimented by a full range of American sweets and treats. A quick chat with the owner, Dawne, revealed that almost all of the menu options are prepared on site – another well-deserved kick in the teeth to our pre-packaged producers of pap. Finally, the service is literally second-to-none. Where else in the thundering metropolis of Newport could one expect to see keen waitresses, in authentic 50’s clobber, doling out smiles and thank-you’s as though the rest of the world had forgotten what basic politeness and courtesy are?
I live in Central London and it has become fashionable over the last two years or so for every mid-range lunchtime venue to advertise the ‘gourmet burger’. I have had serious difficulty in establishing exactly what differentiates a gourmet burger from a normal one (apart from price) and have concluded that for every use of the word gourmet, the establishment charges another fiver. The Island is lucky to have somewhere that produces a genuine burger without either that dratted phrase or the assumption that one should pay extra for hearing it.
It will not have escaped the casual reader of these reviews that I appear to be flattering the Original Phils’ Diner without qualification of any kind. However, their promise of a free lunch providing that I proclaim their obvious talent for a decent meal at a reasonable price has, I assure you, no bearing on the opinions of your reviewer. The fact is that the food at Phil’s Diner is very, very good. The price is surprisingly modest. The service, as I have stated, is charming. Phil’s Diner – the good food guide beckons.
This is, without a doubt, the best place for a burger on the island. They’re made from steak for gods sake!!
My boyfriend and I go there so much we have a regulars card, so I think that says everything! The menu did change recently and it has a lot more choice on it now, especially vegetarian options, and the choice to customise your burger, which my boyfriend often does. Their breakfasts are also to die for, and where else can you go that gives you a 16oz mug of tea for a pound?! When I worked in newport I was often sat in there warming myself on one of those :)
If you want a proper meal in newport that’s not overpriced or fast food, go to Phil’s, you won’t regret it.
Thanks Mollie (and others) for your lovely comments – logging on here is a bit like waking up on Christmas Day; you never know what you might unwrap!
We had a fantastic 1st Birthday last month; thank you to all who attended!
Our competition was a wonderful success and the winner, Ellen Tappenden, devised a recipe called ‘Death By Sweet Pizza’! Look out for it on our menu next month; meanwhile, Ellen and 20 of her friends will be enjoying Dinner At The Diner in August as a thank you for winning! There will be further competitions in the near future so keep your eyes peeled!
A big thank you to Matt & Cat for your comments in your Festival ‘Out-and-About’ section. Several of our customers over the weekend paraphrased your ‘best café on the Island’ and my husband and I hope that we can maintain the accolade for many years to come ( don’t get complacent – chef).
Once again, I’d like to thank those reviewers who have taken the trouble to air their thoughts on our Diner through these pages. It is only through comments such as these that we can improve our standards and maintain our quality.
Love to all, as always,
Read Mat & Cats ‘where to eat’ festival review - went to Phils Dinner on your say so ‘possibly the best cafe on the island’.
Food was great and came out really quick I mean REALLY quick! Being an open kitchen means you get to watch everything being cooked which is a definate plus!
All the staff were dressed as the pink ladies from Grease, the service was sooo friendly, very different from the numpties up at the festival.
I love this place and will always come back x x x x
Had a lovely lunch here today. I had the vegeburgur and the wife and kids all had hamburgers. All freshly cooked and nicely prepared. Fantastic original touches like the free Wurlitzer jukebox and authentic American food lead to an original experience. Looking forward to returning for the breakfast in the very near future.
Only downside was the drinks on offer with the Children’s Meals were very poor quality luminescent squashes full of sweeteners. We passed on these!
Great to have a high quality cafe like this in town.
Just to confirm our 1st Birthday Party next Saturday (22nd May). We have an amazing day planned out - magic act throughout the day, free balloons and free cake for everyone! We’ll be dishing out various milkshake samples all day along with free Mountain Dew! Staff will be dressed up and in the party mood - hope you can join us!
There will be Spot Prizes given away during the day!
Hope to see you there!
Dawne x x x x
This place is amazing. The decor, particularly the jukebox, the service, the whole feel of the place!
The burgers are def the best on the Island and I cannot get over how many different milkshakes you do. My kids LOVE IT!!!
Can’t go anywhere else on Satuyrdays now, kids won’t have it!
All respect to the Diner - a wonderful idea for the Island and an asset.
why not put on a 50’s 60’s diner type disco with DJ’s with real vinyl and fancy dress.
I just happen to know of a DJ who would do it ;)
Thanks for all the comments since my last post. Sorry I’ve not been on here for a while but just to answer a few points:
Hi Abbie, we get our Lucky Charms imported from America. There are a number of websites around that sell them but be careful - some will charge you a fortune for delivery and one or two will not even send the goods out! Obviously, we make a saving on delivery charges by buying them in bulk.
Hi Scarlett, we don’t actually currently open in the evenings. It’s one of those things we discuss now and again but there doesn’t seem to be a big enough ‘market’ for it. However, we do hire out the Diner (fully staffed of course) if ever you’re thinking of having a party or celebration. It’s not expensive and you get the place exclusively to yourself.
Hi Ginnie, as confirmed by Dee we do have quite a reasonable vegetarian range. Apart from the burgers (spicy bean rather than imitation meat) and a fantastic vegetarian sausage - which even some of our carnivorous customers prefer - we also do toasties, salads and the like, as well as my own Homemade Macaroni Cheese, which I make on site. Come in and have a browse!
It’s our 1st birthday on Saturday 22nd May so we’re planning a party! There will be entertainment, spot prizes, balloons and, of course, a massive birthday cake! Details are still to be confirmed but we’re really looking forward to it. A huge thank you to all of our customers for all your support during our first year - long may it continue!!!
If you have any questions, by all means post them here or, for an immediate response, just call me at the Diner on 523247. We’re open from 8am Mon-Sat and from 10am on Sundays.
Love to all,
Dawne x x x
There’s lots of vegetarian options that I’ve seen on the menu at Original Phil’s - no dead animals involved in those! Plus all very well priced!
Any chance of getting something to eat at Original Phil’s that doesn’t involve dead animals? If so, I’ll be happy to try it!
Went here today. Fantastic place.
Service great, food great, prices spot on.
Definatly going back again.
Only place I can get a top notch coke float!
Me and my friends love phils diner, especially the lucky charms :D
Not sure why this comment appeared under Phil’s Diner rather than the Pointer section, but the question was answered some time ago (and was published in Wight Life magazine). Yes, the current management are leaving because the pub (i.e. brewery) company increased the rent to an unaffordable level
I have heard the Pointers is changing hands, any more info?
I don’t know how they can be so rude, i love phil’s diner, im thinking about going there tonight with some friends, one question, when does it close tonight!?
we love phil`s diner
me and my boyfriend go quite a lot especially weekends.
I was just wondering where you get the delicious lucky charms.??
I would realy like to know
we love it there.
For anyone who reads this site avidly you may have seen my dismay at eating in Phils original diner last summer.. small recap!! I called the waitress over and pointed out that the fries she had recently delivered to our table should have been cheesy chips. The young lady then sloped off to the kitchen empty handed and returned with a handful of cheese!! yes in her hand, eeeww, also we were given another tables food and told to get on with it.. but best yet..
I said you do realise we will not return and she replied.. I rally am not that bothered hehe funny!! Last week my gorgeous husband suggested a burger in newport and sure I am not a maccy ‘d’s kinda girl we headed to Phil’s mm I went in and enjoyed a lovely chat with the gorgeous lady behind the huge array of american products( buy the Gruber)Peanut butter and Jello in a jar!) I explained away our previous visit and she promptly replied with “were you pregnant at the time?” yes i was! well she patiently explained that the young lass was a student who had served us and all her descrepencies woul have landed her in BIG trouble if she had been there. any way.. the FACT that the owner had remembered my text to you and my comments was amazing I was impressed.
Ahead to our meal.. absolutely fantastic, value for money delicious and friendly service. So I say to the lady who served us, a big thank you.. you know who you are.
What an amazing discovery!!! A friend told me about Phil’s Diner last week so we went there on Saturday. I had known the place when it was Top of Town cafe and had never bothered to venture in on account of the staff smoking outside. Plus it used to look like a dump! Although it was very busy (in fact we had to wait five minutes for a table), my kids and I were really impressed by the feel of the place, it was very clean with staff whizzing about cleaning tables and the floor constantly - the waitress (who turned out to be the owner - girlpower!) gave me free top-ups on my coffee which was very american and my two children both got free sweets for waiting!
I ordered a burger of the month which was a lamb burger. My two sons each wanted hot dogs. The food came out well presented and in good time. Another waitress offered to grab some sauces for us and I was amazed by the number of different american sauces they have. When pressed by my youngest, I asked where I could buy the sauces and was told that they would get them in for me to buy if I wanted!
I have to say that I am not a fan of hot dogs but the kids gobbled them up eagerly - even attemplting some of the side-salald which was a revelation in itself. My lamb burger was, quite honestly, the best burger I have EVER eaten. Simple as that.
Overall, this is not the cheapest place to eat in Newport, but it’s not expensive either. I think it’s wonderful that someone has gone to the trouble to think up something truly unique for the Island - most of these kind of places only turn up in London or wherever - and I commend the owner, Dawn, for creating such a well thought-out, family friendly venue. We’ll be going back this weekend for seconds!
Thanks for all the comments (both good and bad!) We have been looking at our menu over the Xmas period and one criticism that pops up occasionally is the size of our burgers. They are quarter-pound in weight (113.7g) but because they are pure steak (which is denser than typical burgers that include water, rusk etc) they have a tendency to appear small! As a result, in our new menu we shall be introducing our 6oz pure steak burger from mid-February … At No Extra Cost! Sod the bank manager, bailed out, publicly owned, expenses scandal, duck-houses in the middle of the moat, I love Peter Mandleson … think I’m working too late.
Love to all,
I agree. Amazing burger! Doesn’t look that big but really fills you up! Try the peanut butter milkshake and let your mouth fall in love!!! … Only question; why’s the jukebox set to random? It would be so cool if you could pick your own songs!
Best place for a burger.
i had the smallest blt sandwich here it had 3 wedges of tomato 1 lettuce leaf and 1 rasher of bacon i wont bother again also the prices have gone up and the portions have gone down. dissapointed
Whatever you do, do not pay any attention to the anonymous slating given to the diner in one of the comments above. This has to be the best place to eat in Newport, if not the Island. It’s got a fantastic atmosphere, the food is brilliant and the service is really nice. I have eaten there at least six times since they opened in June and it’s always been very good and we need more places like it. Obviously, some people are born to moan (all be it anonymously) but if they really did receive that bad a service then they’re obviously confusing the place with MacDonalds.
I know the girl you mean, she still works there on Sundays (or well she was working there today anway!) And the other hot blonde one works on Saturdays and sometimes during the week. I guess they’re all back at school/college now. Dunno what you meant about waiting, it used to be terrible last year but its loads better now.
what has happened to the lovely waitresses(especially the enthusiastic 1 with her hair in bunches!)that used to work there they made the incredibly long wait for the food tollerable now phil the chef is serving not so good i will return when they do.
Hi Matt & Cat,
I do remember our chat about American sweets - we’ve got loads in now so you must pop in and try them! (Is that too overtly advertising or can I get away with it in the context of the conversation?!) Thanks once again for the review - I had no idea how famous you both were until now!
Hi Norfolk Nick,
It’s lovely to hear your son wants to ‘have a go’ at our Challenge! Unfortunately, I haven’t got a photo but can describe as follows: 16oz’s of steak (made up of 4 x 4oz pure steak burgers) between a large bun with cheese, a side order of large fries (either chunky chips or spicy curly fries), a side order of onion rings and, of course, side-salad. Many have attempted it, some have succeeded, but some have failed…!
I look forward to hopefully seeing you there.
mmmm Sadly I have to beg to differ on your great experience of Phil’s Diner.
This is/was my experience from lunchtime today..
My husband & I have just moved to the island and were impressed to actually see Phils ‘Open’ as this was our 3rd attempt at a burger in this Diner!
We arrived at 11.30 so it was not too busy, We ordered a belly buster burger a Cream soda float and cheesy chips yum!! we sat & waited in anticipation . ..
Along came my cream soad which I can only describe as Volcanic in aruption!! all over the table the floor. It’s mighty sticky stuff Cream soda! Toilets were however nice and clean for me to wash endless ice cream of my dress. Then the KP came over with a fry up… not ours we replied to which he just huffed and said you sure? then he returned with fries.. where’s the cheese we enquired? he went back to Phill and said it’s on it’s way mmm we were a little confused at this point. Then he returned with a childrens burger! lets just remind ourselves that we are at this point being served by the Kitchen porter not waitress.. we responded with ‘hey where is our belly buster? , he replied I dunno.. take this, we asked again for the belly buster. The waitress then returned with the childrens burger and said ‘ I made a mistake take this!!, we are sharing I replied (i’m seven months pregnant so eat little and often) she made no effort to get the correct burger and just showed us the till receipt with HER error on, to which we responded with fine if you’re not going to do anything we will not return, she said fine.. we were lovely smiley and amicable BUT needed food. The little ickle burger was nice, but quite frankly the service was a huge let down and we will never return and given the very short opening times It would suggest Phil probably does not need the custom of our family anyway.. Hope you find this constructive.
Good review Matt & Cat - excellent photos.
Dawne, my 13 year old son would like to see a picture of the ‘Phil’s Challenge’ super mega meal. We are due to visit the Island in August & he fancies his chances……….
Hello Matt & Cat!
I have just read your review of The Original Phil’s Diner and have to declare an interest insofar as I am the joint-owner, along with the mysteriously original Phil!
I really appreciate your comments - there is absolutely nothing more important to a business than an objective assessment, whether good or bad, and whilst you point out that you have no particular experience I would beg to differ given the number of reviews on your website!
I am so pleased that you found the establishment to have improved so much since re-opening - certainly I and everyone I know completely concurred with your assessment of the old Top of the Town and it was because such a beautiful-looking place had gone so drastically downhill that Phil and I decided to have a go at it ourselves. Neither I, Phil, nor any of the staff have had anything to do with working in or running a diner before so you can imagine the challenge we had before us in setting up - by the way, the ‘Original’ bit is only there because Phil was the builder who renovated the place two years ago under the previous owner!
Thank you again for taking the time and trouble to patronise and review our establishment in such detail, although be warned, the waitress claims a remembrance of your visit and reckons to be able to recognise you!!! Being a fledgling business, we are still somewhat ‘finding our feet’ and as such constantly adjusting the menu, and hope you can find time to visit us again soon.
Dawne Rawlings x
Matt and Cat respond: Hi Dawne. Thanks for your comment. It’s possible that you were the lady that Cat spent some time chatting with about American sweets - Twinky’s and the like. Although we’re incognito, we’re not in disguise! Good luck with your venture.
Hi! Read your review of the top of the town cafe and totally agreed - it used to be rubbish! However, new owners do proper steak burgers, waitress service that actually delivers on time (I only get half an hour for lunch!) and proper American stuff you can’t get here - Lucky Charms, Authentic rootbeer floats etc.
Long live The Original Phil’s Diner! Look forward to seeing your review!