“We’re going on a trip in our favorite rocket ship. Zooming through the sky, Little Einsteins.” This quote from the children’s television show Little Einsteins perfectly exemplifies the feelings one experiences when walking into Galaxy Diner. The first glimpse of this far-out eatery lies in the spaceships, satellites, and stars that adorn the surface of the building’s exterior walls. Once inside, the interior resembles what Catherine Pommersheim (‘17) describes as “a typical 1950’s diner that was taken over by aliens.” The fluorescent lights that line the ceilings and the spaceship-themed lights that hover over each table contribute to this atmosphere. On top of all of this, the entire building is encapsulated with sheet metal, which makes restaurant goers feel as if they are eating in a legitimate spacecraft.
Galaxy Diner obviously stands apart from the other restaurants surrounding it in Carytown. Galaxy Diner began its existence on planet Earth in 1999, and it still continues to be a Richmond favorite. MSN even awarded it the title of the “Best Diner in Virginia.” MSN describes Galaxy Diner as “the go-to place if you need massive amounts of comfort and crispy cuisine, like fried pickles or fried Oreos.” The article also cites local favorites as the “Trailer Park Pancakes,” which are made with peanut butter and bananas, and the assortment of milkshake options. Indeed, the menu itself has something for everyone. From the “Supernova Sandwiches ” to the “Galactic Dogs,” it’s easy to find something to eat. The diner also offers fourteen different complementary sides, ranging from french fries to mac and cheese, to accompany any order that is not an appetizer or dessert.
During my visit to Galaxy Diner, I had the chance to try four infinitely delicious meals and one dessert: the Grilled Bennett, the Aztec Burger, the Classic Bacon Burger, the Shepherd’s Pie, and the Brownie Sundae.
The Grilled Bennett is a grilled cheese topped with feta, provolone, marinated tomatoes, and cucumbers. This item is usually my go-to whenever I visit Galaxy. It is consistently grilled to the perfect crispiness, and the tomatoes and cucumbers complement the cheeses and provide the ideal amount of flavor to the sandwich. However, during this particular visit, my sandwich lacked the provolone cheese needed to allot for the appropriate amount of cheesiness. I pointed this out to my waitress, and she willingly brought me a new sandwich with the provolone in its rightful place. Generally, I would rate the Grilled Bennet a solid 10/10, but because of the delay, I give it a still high 8/10 rating.
The second dish I tried was the Aztec Burger. The Aztec Burger is a burger garnished with pepper jack cheese, salsa, avocado, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle mayo. The salsa and chipotle mayo added a generous amount of spiciness to this otherwise spiceless burger. Caroline Ritter (‘17) says, “I would not recommend this burger to those who cannot handle spiciness, but I’m invincible and can take the heat, so I can handle it.” This burger justly deserves a strong 9/10.
The next meal I sampled was the Classic Bacon Burger. Its title gives away that this burger is, in fact, very classic. The burger simply contains a burger patty, cheese, lettuce, tomato, and two pieces of bacon. The burger itself was cooked extremely well, and the bacon added an adequate amount of texture and crispiness. Olivia Jacobs (‘17) describes the burger as “dank” and was quite pleased with her decision to order the burger. This burger had no trouble checking all my boxes so, consequently, I rate it a perfect 10/10.
The last meal I tried was the Shepherd’s Pie. This particular Shepard’s Pie looked just like the Shepherd’s Pie that is a beloved comfort food for many Americans. The seasoned beef, corn, mashed potatoes and gravy topped with parmesan tasted just like how it tastes when it is home-cooked. However, Pommersheim says, “I liked it, but I am still partial to my grandmother’s Shepherd’s Pie.” Because Galaxy Diner was unable to prepare a Shepherd’s Pie that impressed Pommersheim, I give it a 7/10.
To end my meal, I ordered the Brownie Sundae. This was undoubtedly the highlight of my visit to Galaxy Diner. Not only was the presentation utterly mouthwatering, but the actual taste was as well. The brownie was perfectly gooey and chocolatey, and the cool, smooth texture of the vanilla ice cream perfectly complemented it. The whipped cream and cherry were also a nice aesthetic touch. My restaurant companions and I downed the two Brownie Sundaes we ordered in approximately a minute. Rate: 1000/10.
Overall, my visit to Galaxy Diner was a blast, and I will definitely be returning in the future.
Unless otherwise stated, photos by Kate Kinder.