Red Oak Diner

My daughter's been bugging me about going to a diner, and so off we went to discover a new one today. There are dozens of diners around me and I'm embarrassed to say we've only been to 5 before going to Red Oak. And we actually ended up here by accident because I had meant to go further north on 206, but the rush hour traffic really gave us no choice.

My husband wasn't crazy about his pick-- breakfast food-- and was not crazy about the lack of ambiance either. He actually said he felt like he was in some 80's movie and that there would be a shot of some impoverished diners in one corner, huddling over a cheap meal. I'll give my husband this much: the place was rose-pink bland without any decor on the walls (or none that I noticed anyway) and when I walked in I really did think our dinner was headed south when the dessert display was ghost-town empty.

There was just one diner in the whole place when we walked in, but not to worry, because as soon as we sat down, three other tables were filled within five minutes. They had a sub-par diner menu which made ordering difficult, so when the waitress suggested the fish & chips special ($7.95), I chose that in a heartbeat. My husband played it safe with 2 eggs, ham, sausage, and my daughter had the hot cakes with bacon kids' meal. My special was served with a choice of soup and vegetable, so I went with matzoh ball and cole slaw. The matzoh, unfortunately, was not as spongey as I like it; it had the hardness of days-old bread and tasted more like a bread ball than a matzoh ball. Fortunately, the fish-- Chilean sea bass-- saved the day with its huge and fresh fillet chunks, as opposed to minced fish. I also tried some of my daughter's hot cakes and they were just the way I like it: fluffy, buttery, and milky.

I'd go back to Red Oak, but next time I'll have to leave my husband at home. I'd like to try the Early Bird special!

Red Oak Diner
1217 Route 206
Skillman, NJ 08558
(609) 430-8200

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