Hilton Head Diner Details
Breakfast, lunch, dinner/seven days a week/24 hours a day
More than a century after t he concept first sizzled into t he American culinary tradition, diners can be found far beyond their early New England roots. So, what’s it take to be a diner? Typically, a wide-ranging menu stocked wit h tempting American fare, burgers, milkshakes, hearty breakfasts, booths and a counter, friendly, folksy waitstaff. Diners typically have wide-open hours to meet every need.
Hilton Head Diner, founded in 1984 and owned since 1994 by brothers Nick Tsironis and Edward “Eddie” Lehnen, checks all those boxes and many more, offering long hours and a huge, varied menu (including breakfast any time) in a classic setting.
“When I was in New York, I was running one of the biggest diners there — Thru-Way Diner outside of New Rochelle,” Lehnen says. “Cooking school is fine, but I learned on the job.”
The menu features a wide array of “comfort food,” including classics such as Yankee pot roast, meatloaf, chicken and waffles and creamy macaroni-and-cheese that keeps customers coming back for literally decades, including a few celebrities who appreciate the food and low-key environment. That’s on top of burgers, steaks, deli specialties, seafood, pasta, salads and a whole lot more, including a children’s menu.
The brothers make every one of t heir rich desserts in-house, including decadent cheesecake, eclairs and “Deat h by Chocolate Cake.” Whole cakes and cheesecakes ar e available. And in a much-appreciated variance from diner tradition, Hilton Head Diner offers a menu of beer, wine and cocktails.
Open 7 a.m.-11 p.m., seven days a week. 6 Marina Side Drive on Highway 278, Hilton Head Island. 843-686-2400. hiltonheaddiner.com.