Uncle John’s Diner

I remember seeing Uncle John’s Diner while driving around Cohoes, NY and making a mental note to check it out. I mean, it’s got Albany John’s name in it!

It’s a twee storefront located right off of 787 (300 Ontario St, Cohoes, NY 12047). You might not notice it at first, but it’s so cute you won’t miss it once you do see it. You can see the counter before you even walk in. There’s not much space to it – a few tables, but best of all a long counter with stools! I love diner counters with stools.

We were greeted when we walked in – it’s a friendly little joint.

Coffee, coffee, coffee. I think the menu said this was $1.25 per cup. Not bad. Nothing bitter. Solidly inoffensive diner coffee.
Water is unavailable as tap. They sell bottles for $0.50 each. They mentioned something about Cohoes water being expensive. I think it was a joke. I don’t know. I was hungover and unable to comprehend humor, so I was like, heeee yeah, please give me coffee. Also, it’s an older place, so if they say their water is not potable, well, I’m going to go with it. I can only imagine how old the pipes were.
The space behind the counter is also small. It’s such a tiny, old building. Most of the things in the building looked like they’ve been there forever. I really like that – adds character. It looks like there was a back kitchen area too, which also looked a little old/worn/rustic.
I also thought it was a neat juxtaposition to see gigantic shakers of paprika and garlic powder sitting with 100% pure olive oil.

The interior is covered with pictures of old Cohoes. There was even a lady there at a table sitting underneath the picture of her at the table. HOW META IS THAT? (Am I even using ‘meta’ right? I DON’T KNOW!).

If you want a little bit of Cohoes history with your breakfast or lunch, Uncle John’s Diner is the place to go. And while the diner itself was, yes, old, everything inside was kept clean. Lots of tidying going on while I was in.

Albany John and I each got the 2 eggs, homefries, toast, and meat combination ($4.25 each). Albany John got rye as his toast (rye & wheat bread available for $0.30 extra).

He got his eggs scrambled, and bacon as his meat. The eggs looked really soft. Bacon was cooked fairly crispy. He covered the homefries in ketchup.

I got sausage as my meat, and had my eggs overeasy. Yay for overeasy eggs! I like to dip my toast in it. I liked the toast. Toasty and crunchy without being too hard, and not drenched in butter.

The sausage was the link variety (aka, the best kind of sausage to have) and split in half. It was a neat sensation. Chewy, crunchy meaty bits on the cut side, and enjoyably chewy other side with casings (real casings, none of that vegetable matter casing whatnottery).

My homefries were a little on the tepid side, and soft. I like them crunchy, so I didn’t eat too much of them. I’d probably pass on them in the future.

They also have sandwiches and sides. I’d definitely be up for trying a sandwich, too.

I think they’re cash only. In retrospect, I think we were undercharged. It was $9.99 after tax for both of our meals and coffees. Maybe it should have been more like $11. Did we get a free coffee? I have no idea.

Oh, and major bonus – this cute little diner is also open on Sundays! It’s the kind of place you can go and chat with everyone there if you want, or just sit quietly and read the paper. I like those kinds of places. Everyone was really warm and treated everyone nicely. They were especially nice to the senior citizens, opening the door for them, making sure they got served first. I think that says a lot about Uncle John’s Diner, and it’s really sweet.

1 comment
  1. Looks like a real “joint.” I love those. I used to go to a great one in Boston. Crazy good home fries. I was off the college's meal plan and eating there at least 5 times a week. My mother once went in and thanked Maria behind the counter for taking care of me. Alas, last time I was in Boston it was a Thai noodle place.

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