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The Sunliner Diner sign lit up at sunset.

Sunliner Diner – Gulf Shores, Alabama

With all-day breakfast, hand-spun milkshakes, and healthy portions, this blast from the past in Gulf Shores, Alabama will whisk you back to the 1950s.
by Crystal Roberts | February 6, 2023

Calling all Cool Cats! 

If you really want to flip your lid and have a ball, you better beat feet to the nifty Sunliner Diner tucked away in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Slip on some pedal pushers or your favorite poodle skirt and take a step back in time to the 1950s.

This retro-style diner offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner staples whilst transporting you to the good old days.  Share a slurg and a burger with a dolly in a car shaped booth, or cut a rug to the sweet sounds from the jukebox and enjoy watching Lucy get loaded on Vitameatavegamin on the big screen.  If that doesn’t tickle your fancy, you’ll be jazzed to know the Sunliner Diner also offers a selection of cocktails, beer, and wine for all you beatniks.  

No matter what you pick, you’re sure to have an enjoyable experience that will leave you feeling like you are living in the golden age.

Upon entering the ginchiest establishment you are greeted by the sounds of yesteryear through the speakers.  Doo-wop, rock and roll, and rhythm and blues hits will have you swinging and swaying with your sweetheart while the sweet and savory smells from the kitchen will have your stomach grumbling with anticipation.  Employees decked out in 50’s garb greet you with a “Hey-Daddio!” as they guide you along the checkered floors to your red patent “leather” booth.  

The soda counter with red chairs and a classic car as a booth.
Sunliner Diner’s soda counter. PHOTO – Crystal Roberts

We hope you brought your cat-eyed reading glasses so you can check out the menu, disguised as the morning newspaper, complete with Alabama beach news articles from the 50s as well as tantalizing food and drink options from today.  

Get ready to loosen your belt a notch!  

All day breakfast selections include a variety of benedicts, fresh Belgian waffles, pancakes, french toast, country-fried meats, as well as traditional breakfast options like eggs and omelets.  The star of the show is undeniably some of the finest, thick-sliced smoky bacon of your life.  Bacon lovers rejoice! It is truly perfection in every bite.

Bacon, eggs, and hashbrowns on a plate at Sunliner Diner
The classic breakfast setup is done right at Sunliner Diner. PHOTO – Vittles&Nosh

Lunch and dinner options begin at 11 am with diner classics like burgers, salads, chicken and waffles, hearty sandwiches, hand breaded chicken tenders, homemade meatloaf, beer battered fish and chips, and even a New York strip steak dinner. Every bite will awaken taste buds that have been laying dormant for decades. 

You’ll be in fat city thanks to the efforts taken by the Sunliner Diner to keep meals housemade.  This dedication really makes anything you nosh on the bee’s knees.  

The Sunliner Diner hasn’t forgotten your little ankle-biters, either.  

They offer a children’s menu full of peachy-keen grub options such as eggs, pancakes, french toast, waffles, chicken tenders, macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese, and hamburgers.  A selection that’s sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.  These options are limited to children ages 12 and under, ya dig?

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Smiling soda jerk icon.

Know the Lingo

beat feet – to run
pedal pushers – calf-length trousers
slurg – milkshake
dolly – a pretty girl
jazzed – enthused
beatniks – members of the counterculture
ginchiest – cool, happenin’, awesome
fat city – a great place
nosh – to chew or munch 
bee’s knees – exceptional, outstanding
ankle-biters – children
peachy keen – wonderful
ya dig? – do you understand?
made in the shade – an ideal situation
soda jerk – a person who mixes up sodas, malts, milkshakes, and sundaes.
punch it – press the gas pedal
on the stick – prepared, smart
razz your berries – impress 
party pooper – no fun 

What is a 50’s diner without a selection of old-fashioned sodas, floats, milkshakes, malts, and sundaes?  The Sunliner Diner does not drop the ball when it comes to sweet treats.  Your taste buds will have it made in the shade with a selection of towering, made from scratch cakes, pies, and other confections.  Your eyes and stomachs are sure to be impressed with the Happy Day Sundae, large enough to feed the whole family!  

On the other hand, release your inhibitions and go for the Big Tickle Party milkshake. This adventurous choice puts your trust in the soda jerk to deliver a delicious hand-crafted premium quality milkshake of their choosing.  No matter what you choose, you’ll be sure to enjoy every sensational, sugary sip or spoonful.  

Once you’ve popped a button or two, jump in your hotrod and punch it. You’ll be on the stick because the Gulf Shores public beach is conveniently located only two and a half blocks from the Sunliner Diner.  Continue the 50’s way of life with an ocean side stroll.  Stretch your legs on the white sandy beach while listening to the waves crash on the shore.  Search for seashells, scout wildlife, and take in nature’s beauty.  

Just be sure to listen to Mama and wait an hour before swimming after a meal.   

Here’s the bottom line.  If what you crave is a home style meal with a heaping scoop of nostalgia, the Sunliner Diner is sure to razz your berries.  Don’t be a party pooper; make this your first stop the next time you are in Gulf shores, Alabama.  (Also found in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee)

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