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Eat Here: The sounds of home fries sizzling. The aroma of bacon and cheesy omelets frying. The constant commotion of people laughing and chatting. This is what you get at Stella’s Diner in Syracuse: An atmosphere of at-home dining outside of the home.

When to Go: Breakfast time. Stella’s is open for all meals- breakfast, lunch and dinner, but breakfast is where it’s at. It doesn’t matter if it’s 5 a.m. on a weekday or 11 a.m. on a weekend, Stella’s is always hopping. People from near and far travel to this diner for their mouth-watering hot cakes, eggs and homefries and its at-home atmosphere. The line is guaranteed to be out the door on weekends, so if you plan to come, be prepared to wait. Bottom Line: Be ready to stand in line.

Blue Plate Special: Whatever you want. Stella’s is a diner known for not following the menu. As the staff’s motto goes, “Whatever you want, we can make,” within limits of course. So if you’re craving eggs over hard, buttery grits and extra-fried homefries, but don’t see a “Combo” for that on the menu, order it anyway because the staff cooks to order. Bottom Line: Be adventurous. Don’t go by the menu, go by your gut.

The Scene: Pictures, paintings and signs of Betty Boop line the walls, countertops and walkways. The owner is Betty Stelakis and her customers love both her and her diner. So throughout the years, Stella’s loyals have brought in Betty Boop paraphernalia from near and far. The diner has an overall homey feeling, so you won’t be out of place if you decide to eat breakfast in your pajamas and winter snow boots. Bottom Line: It’s homey here.

The Crew: The staff knows practically everyone in the restaurant because they’re used to regulars. But don’t be intimidated if you’re a newbie. They’re just as welcoming to newcomers. Most of the staff has been around since the diner’s opening, so they know the menu like the back of their hand. If you have a question, they surely have an answer. They’re friendly, helpful and a reason that will make you come back for more. Bottom Line: The people working for Stella’s Diner know what’s up.

The Crowd: From relatives dining after this morning’s church service to frat boys recouping after last night’s formal, Stella’s welcomes all. Betty says the diner is a “family restaurant,” and you can be sure of this as you watch children run down the aisles as they wait for their hot cakes.  Bottom Line: It’s a nice hodgepodge of ages.


Stella's | Shot Clock | The Sound Garden | La Familia de Salsa

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