Pop Diner opened to significant fanfare a little more than two years ago. The space was filled with Lichtenstein-esque prints and head shots of pop stars. The walls were bright red, the music was loud and the place was open 24 hours. It was just the sort of diner Uptown needed to keep late night drunks from digesting their own stomachs. We wanted to love it!
There was just one problem: the food was awful. I waded my way through dry, greasy burgers with meat of questionable provenance, terrible hot dogs and sandwiches that looked like they were assembled by a mitten-wearing walrus.
But somehow the story of Pop ends with a smile for the owners that tortured Dallasites with bad diner food. The restaurant has closed, which sounds like just retribution, but that's until you learn the terms of the closure -- the owners sold the restaurant to a holding group based in Atlanta.
Apparently Pop Diner as a concept was a viable business model -- there could be Pops popping up all over the place in the coming months.
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But my biggest hope is that something worthwhile slides into that West Village space soon. It's already set up to be a diner. Someone just needs to go eat a few meals at Tom Fleming's Crossroads Diner up north to see how things should be done. Or maybe Fleming could take over the space himself and expand his business. I can taste that house-brined corned beef now.