Diner food, with a Thai spin

Growing up, I never really understood the obsession with American diners. I hated that Mel’s Drive-in was always so popular for meals. I disliked that I would even go there with friends as the “no-brainer” place to hang out and eat a relatively affordable meal (while in middle and high school). I was never excited by the generic food with the generic decor and okay-to-subpar service. I had no idea why anyone would *love* a diner.

Then, Chris found this place called Little Grenjai in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, which we visited today. It’s a Thai-style diner that recently opened in Bedford Stuyvesant. It’s kind of all the fun, quirky parts of an American diner, from the booth seating to the bright lights, with delicious Thai-inspired food. The kaprow burger is the go-to for lunch, which we got with a Thai-style fried duck egg. And it was kind of the perfect burger: a thin, pork-based meat patty, spiced exactly as pad kaprow is, with a lingering heat at the end and slightly crisp edges; fresh Thai basil inside in lieu of boring, flavorless lettuce, two fluffy sesame buns, and a perfectly deep-fried Thai-style duck egg with super crisp brown edges and a yolk that literally exploded all over my hands after I took a single bite. Pookster was even amused, as we ordered a side of fries, which to our surprise, came out in a pouch of large coin-shaped potato disks. Pookster happily ate almost the whole bag while people watching in the diner.

If diner food were this good at Mel’s Drive-in, maybe I wouldn’t have disliked it so much growing up in San Francisco.

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