I had read both positive and negative reviews of this eatery, called The Diner, which is located on main Khayaban-e-Shahbaz along the same side lane that has Espresso, Habitt, Sawadika and Subway - that one day I decided to try it out.
When we entered, the waiters told us that the floor upstairs was the smoking area, and asked us to sit on the ground floor.However, we proceeded upstairs any way, as the ground floor was a bit short of space. As we moved upstairs, The ambience is anything but that of a "diner". It’s quite on the chic side, with dim lighting, huge glass windows, and tilted mirrors adorning mahogany colored walls. The walls have pictures of the dishes on the menu. Unique! And as far the menu goes, The Diner is famous for its burgers. Main entrees are priced at the usual Rs 450-700. They also have what is called "Brick Oven" Pizza. But the dessert menu is surprisingly limited and their beverages menu indicates that diners can come here for just coffee as well. So finally we ordered Penne in Pesto Sauce, with Grilled Chicken, Mushrooms and Oven-Dried Tomatoes (merely a few strips) for Rs 485 plus tax.
A huge disappointment! The portion-size was a big let-down compared to the price of this entree. Besides that a Club Sandwich with Roast Beef, Grilled Chicken, Cheese, Lettuce and Tomato, for Rs 395 plus tax.There was a choice between white bread and brown bread.Again, the portion size left a lot to be desired. Also, you'd think they'd throw in some more French Fries and Cole Slaw, which are standard on-the-sides for Clubs, at the rate they are charging. So from the deserts we ordered a Warm Chocolate Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream, for Rs 285 plus tax.
This was, surprisingly, a huge hit! The brownie was warm and rich. How 'surprising'! Money talks, doesn't it? And an Oreo Sundae for Rs 295 plus tax.
This dessert had two generous scoops of ice cream, one Vanilla and the other Chocolate, topped with crushed Oreo cookies, crumbled brownie chunks, cream and chocolate sauce.
It was very scrumptious and so heavy that one person could not finish it off!
Verdict: I would not recommend The Diner for lunch or dinner, but I think it’s not so bad for coffee or dessert. The portion size of the dishes was just not worth it, especially in a city like Karachi, where you can easily get a better value for your money (and service by more courteous staff) at other, similarly-priced, upscale joints.
Please note: the above prices may have changed, kindly double check on them.