Arts & Culture Editor
Fatso’s 24/7 Diner, Lebanon’s first and only all-American diner, opened its doors in the heart of Hamra on 14 August 2014. Offering a wide range of American cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the diner was soon packed with customers, some of whom left Fatso’s never to return.
Fatso’s delivers on its theme, providing guests with an authentic experience of eating in an American diner reminiscent of the 50s. From the black and white tile to the red sofas and the array of classic American dishes such as hash browns and PB&J (peanut butter and jelly) sandwiches, Fatso’s boasts a diverse menu with specialties locals can’t find just anywhere.
Another factor that adds to the generally favorable ambience of the cozy diner is the music selection. Customers can often be seen using the Shazam app to looking up the songs being played.
This, however, is the limit to the perks of dining at Fatso’s. While the setting and the general environment are nice, and the staff is friendly, Fatso’s fails where it truly matters: the quality of the food.
Aside from the steak—which is purportedly “succulent and delicious, its taste exploding in your mouth with every bite,” says Nicole Massoud, an AUB student—and the drinks, which have been well-received, people are generally displeased with their food.
Fatso’s Diner offers an all-you-can-eat breakfast special, where customers can enjoy a limitless stack of pancakes, drenched in oozing syrup. The dish, quite coveted at Fatso’s, has received mixed reviews. While customer Michella Sfeir expressed her utter disgust towards the breakfast plate, Dona Mounir was more receptive, saying the pancakes were “okay, but not the best [she’d] tasted.”
Perhaps the most disappointing dish on the menu is the burgers. Customers often found their meat overcooked to the point of being burnt around the edges, or undercooked to the point where the stuffing was still a bloody red. “My burger was undercooked, but my friends said their burgers—cooked I hope—were average. Nothing they’d come back for, though” said AUB student Accosia Bitar.
Another downside to dining at Fatso’s is the slow service. Customers sometimes had to wait for about 40 minutes to an hour in extreme cases to get their orders because of a palpable shortage of staff.
It should be noted, however, that Fatso’s is but a new restaurant, which leaves vast room for improvement.
With a great environment, a nice staff, and a variety menu backing it up, all it needs to do is work on the quality of the food itself, which could put it in the same league as some of Hamra’s best eateries in no time.
Photo source: facebook.com/Fatso’s Diner 24/7