There was a time when my wife Molly and I considered calling this food blog “Burgers and Pie” because we enjoy those foods so much. We decided on the name #FoodieScore instead due to how often I used the phrase to describe a great recipe or restaurant experience.
The Landmark Diner on the east side of Charlotte, N.C., is our kind of place and a perfect fit to showcase on this site for the fact it’s a great place to get a burger, a slice of pie or a #FoodieScore among the many other delights on the menu.
I first saw Landmark featured on Guy Fieri’s popular Diners, Drive-ins and Dives program, and that was enough for me to add it to our must-try restaurants list. (Though we’ll be honest that not everything Guy visits on DDD is gold.) When I read about it in one of my favorite writers Tommy Tomlinson’s 2019 book “The Elephant in the Room” (which I highly recommend), the Landmark rose near the top of the list.
Diners, in my opinion, define the American restaurant experience perhaps better than any other type of eating establishment. We find diners in great number in the east in places known for them like New York and New Jersey, in small towns and snowy cities across the greater Midwest, and even on the West Coast in starstruck locales like Los Angeles. You can find just about anything on a true diner’s menu, the places are usually open early and open late, and you can expect all of that and more at Landmark in the Queen City.
The place is open at 6 a.m., and the expansive menu is still available past midnight some nights of the week. (Seriously, there’s so much to choose from we meant to take a picture of the menu to show its size, but we forgot because we got lost in selecting our food from among all the options.)
Breakfast? Landmark’s got it.
Meat-and vegetable plates, too? Oh, yeah.
Greek specialties? It’s there.
Pies, cakes and other baked goods? Good luck picking just one.
Coffee, tea, sodas…
And there are Sunday and daily specials to further complicate *ahem* complement your meal choice.
Molly sampled Landmark’s souvlaki, a portion of well-seasoned chicken, cool and creamy tzatziki sauce and other fresh toppings, all nestled on hearty pita bread.
I opted for a western burger with bacon, cheese, barbecue sauce, onion rings, lettuce, tomato and pickles. As Molly noted, it was like a grilled hamburger steak on a bun with all the trimmings. (Check out the photo atop this post for proof.)
We found the French fries, which we both chose for our side items, to be crispy on the outside, potato-y on the inside and plentiful in portion.
Our waitress asked us while ordering if we wanted an appetizer (of which there are many available), and she mentioned the words “apple sticks” during her list of options to consider. We didn’t know what to think of the apple suggestion, so she brought us a complimentary order to try. They were like miniature fried apple pie bites in a crispy crust akin to the breading you’d expect to find on a mozzarella cheese stick. They were savory and sweet and warm, all wrapped up country-fair style in little delightful packages. We’d say they’re the unique delicacy that’s what diners are all about.
We knew before ordering our meal that we wanted dessert. When a place offers pie on the menu, we have a tough time passing it up. We decided to let our waitress answer the toughest question for us: Which pie is the most popular order at Landmark Diner?
The answer came in a slice of Key Lime Pie, with a light Graham cracker crust, a tart and creamy lime filling and a topping of fresh homemade whipped cream garnished with a lime wedge. It was a piece we shared, and it was plenty for that. Key Lime is one of my wife’s favorite pies, usually more so than mine, but we both decided it was a refreshing way to finish off our experience at Landmark Diner.
We recommend you visit Landmark for friendly service, burgers, pies and many other plates from which to enjoy a great meal. And as a #FoodieScore Travels Pro Tip, there’s plenty more to explore nearby, including a great used bookstore called Book Buyers just a few miles west. After a good meal at Landmark, you’ll likely want a place to, as we say here in the South, “let your food settle.” That just means you ate well, and we expect that’s how you’ll feel after this diner #FoodieScore!