“Hey Graham, big problem,” my husband texted his high school friend, a Park City, Utah local.
“Need more than that?” he replied, understandably confused and a bit concerned.
“I need to find a good burger, ideally with a gluten-free bun.”
“Ha! Forget the gluten-free — go to Road Island Diner in Oakley. Worth the drive and you get an awesome shake.”
And with that we were off, on a 27-minute scenic drive from Park City to Oakley, Utah for dinner at the diner. It was well worth the drive. Not only did we enjoy juicy diner burgers with hand-cut fries, but the gluten-free was not forgotten. In fact, my husband was in gluten-free heaven as the menu was filled with gluten-free options, from Mac & Cheese to meatloaf, and more.
And you didn’t have to be avoiding wheat to enjoy the dinner, especially if you enjoy a side of nostalgia with your food. Because the restaurant is the beautifully renovated diner #1107, which rolled off the assembly line of the leading diner manufacturer in 1939, complete with green Italian marble countertops, Tiffany glass clerestory windows and hand laid quarry tiled flooring. It was so special, in fact, that the diner was showcased in the 1939 World’s Fair.
After serving diners in Fall River, Mass. for 14 years, the diner traveled to Middletown, R.I. and was rebranded as “Tommy’s Deluxe Diner.” During that phase of its life the diner was featured on Charles Osgood’s CBS Sunday Morning show, along with many other appearances on TV.
Finally, in 2007, the diner was transported across the country to Oakley, Utah, where its new owners carefully renovated it back to its original condition with love and lots of money. The only modern additions are flat TVs, air conditioning, and tabletop remote jukeboxes. And who doesn’t like TV, A/C and table-side song selections?
As an added bonus the people who work at the diner are friendly and welcoming, and the food is delicious. And don’t forget the milkshake!
It’s only open Thursday- Sunday, so be sure to check that it’s open before you head down to visit.
And do head for a visit… not only to the Road Island Diner but also to Park City, Utah. Because the diner is only one of many treasures to enjoy in the area all year long. For years we made the mistake of visiting only in the winter, spending our trip entirely on the mountain. Skiing is a blast, don’t get me wrong, but coming only for ski season meant I was missing out on so much else. I’ve met many people here who came to Park City to ski, but that it was a visit during the summer or fall that caused them to fall in love with the area and decide to make it their home. It is definitely a four-season wonderland — so plan your next trip, for this fall!