New York City is a funny food town. We love our diners as much as we love our haughty haute cuisine, though I’m more partial to the diner myself, especially if the diner is serving inspired food.

The great diner is to New York what the great bistro is to Paris: the city’s culinary lifeblood available for all to sample. Now I’m not calling Blue Ribbon a diner, though in my world it would be the perfect diner: casual yet neat, and willing to set you up with a plat du mer, matzo ball soup, or fried chicken with mashed potatoes and collard greens.