Located in the historic art district in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Mary’s Gourmet Diner has been in business for 16 years.  Owned and ran by Mary Haglund, along with her two daughters, this very eclectic diner displays various unique pieces of art throughout the restaurant created by local artists and one-of-a-kind vintage decor staples.  
In her community, Mary Haglund is a pillar of the community.  She’s involved in various philanthropy events throughout the year such as a drag brunch, which benefits Pride Winston Salem, and she has founded Mary’s Mavens, which provides mentorship and resources for other women pursuing entrepreneurship. While visiting for breakfast, I had the opportunity to meet Mary.  She is such a gem, her energy is super contagious, and she is just so sweet!  My server was very happy during our entire dining experience.  She genuinely seemed to like her job.  She has been working at Mary’s Gourmet Diner for four years and says that she loves being a part of this diner.  She said that she and her co-workers are a closeknit family.

We started our meal with a basil, strawberry, mint detox water, which was so refereshing.  Their menu has something for everyone.  No matter how healthy or hearty you want to eat, you will find something to satisfy your tastebuds.  I wanted everything, and when you walked past my table, it looked like a cheat day.
The food was so fresh.  Several local products from North Carolina are on the menu.  I started with the breakfast nachos.  It consists of multi-grain tortilla chips loaded with their white cheese sauce (which can be described as rich, cheesy country gravy) cheddar cheese, scrambled eggs, black olives, red onion, tomato, avocado, salsa, and sour cream.  I had to get extra, so I added jalapeño pimento cheese and chicken.  Baaaaay-baaaay!  It was so scrumptious and rich and what I would like to call: a beautiful delicious mess.

The Breakfast Club had a few of my favorite ingredients, so it was a must-order.  This club was piled high with bacon, lettuce, and tomato with avocado, a fried egg, and pesto mayo on wheat toast.

There is a section of the menu dedicated strictly to grit bowls.  The Down Home Gritz grabbed my attention.  This dish was served in a large bowl and it was full of stone-ground grits with Mary’s jalapeño -pimento cheese, two fried eggs, and chopped country ham.  This dish was a wonderful blend of salty and savory.  It was so filling.

For dessert we ordered the daily special, which changes often.  The special was a strawberry French toast topped with strawberry ice cream and cream served with a caramel cream sauce for dipping.  The dipping sauce reminded me of Werther’s candy.  It was the perfect end to our meal.
When you visit, make sure you arrive early.  When I dined, there was a line of hungry customers waiting outside.  It’s just something about supporting local businesses that warms my heart.  If you happen to visit Winston-Salem, North Carolina, make sure that you stop by Mary’s Gourmet Diner.
Follow Mary’s on Instagram @marysgourmetdiner and Facebook: @marysgourmetdiner