Where can you find the rudest waitstaff and tastiest burgers in Melbourne? Look no further than Karen’s Diner in Carlton.
If you love unique dining experiences and a whole lotta sass, Karen’s is a must for your Melbourne bucket list.
As you might guess from the name, Karen’s Diner pays homage to all the Karen’s out there who always have a complaint to air and love asking for the manager.
“What do you want?” is the warm greeting I received as Karen opened the door to let us in. I explained that I had a reservation. After insulting my “basic” name, we were escorted to a table where Karen haphazardly threw the menus telling us to “sit down and shut up.” I knew it was going to be a fun night.
Karen’s sassy attitude and downright rude service didn’t seem to have any limits.
At one point Karen got on the microphone naming and shaming a couple who had arrived 30 minutes in front of the whole diner. We also witnessed Karen’s version of Happy Birthday, aggravated, uninspiring and replacing “hip hip” with “fuck off.”
At one point I asked for tomato sauce to go with my chips, got completely ignored the first time, and received the response “I’m too busy right now” the second time. Needless to say, I never got the sauce. One-star review from me when it comes to service.
The diner is American themed complete with coloured in pictures of Karen made by the patrons. The menu has an extensive range of burgers, wings, shakes and cocktails; all the comfort food favourites.
Reading the menu is almost as entertaining as the horrible service. With popular menu items such as The Basic Karen (AKA standard burger), The ‘I Want To See The Manager’ Karen (AKA double cheeseburger) and Karen’s Best Breast (I’m sure you can guess this one).
My favourite menu items were the shooters; “The Music Is Too Loud,” “I’ve Been Waiting 10 Minutes for Some Service,” and “You’ve Just Lost My Business.”
For all the real Karen’s out there, you get a free drink if your name is actually Karen, so bring your ID!
– Ember Mitchell
Ember is an American turned Aussie. Her love affair with Melbourne goes back five years, and she still can’t get enough of this city! Discovering new hideouts and hidden gems around Melbourne is her hobby. Marketing Strategist by day, spontaneous adventurer, brekky enthusiast, and aerial acrobat by night.
398-400 Lygon St
Carlton, VIC 3053
Karen’s Diner is open in Carlton with horrible service and great food – a dining experience not to be missed!