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After 7 year absence, Mattie's Diner returns to Charlotte

The diner, once located across from the North Carolina Music Factory, has returned along with his classic, chrome-covered diner car.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Mattie's Diner, a Charlotte restaurant once known for its vintage diner building and location along North Carolina Music Factory Blvd., reopened to customers Monday in a new location.

After a 7 year absence, Matt King and his namesake diner are serving food at their new home along The Plaza.

"The diner is a community place by nature. We wanted to find a nice strong community that's walkable. That has a lot of residential around," King told WCNC Charlotte in September as a crane lowered his diner into place from the back of a truck." [A place] we can just become a part of the fabric of the neighborhood."

King and his diner are now located at the corner of The Plaza and Shamrock Drive near both NoDa and Plaza-Shamrock neighborhoods.

The diner building, covered in chrome and featuring seating at both a counter and booths, once sat across from what is now known as the AvidEchange Music Factory. King moved his diner into storage in 2015 when the land was sold to make way for the AvidXchange officer tower building.

RELATED: New Mattie's Diner location will feature expanded seating, outdoor patio

The new location of Mattie's Diner was once a tire shop. It took six months to rezone the property before any work could begin.

King has had his eyes set on reopening, and like so many other business owners, was delayed by the pandemic.

"COVID set us back about 1 year, going through the zoning process," King said "then prices went through the roof."

The new location includes both the classic diner itself and expanded seating within the old tire shop and garage. They also now have outdoor seating. In total, the restaurant can seat 130 people, an expanded capacity compared to their original location.

The diner building is from the 1940s and was purchased in New Jersey in 2005. It was moved to North Carolina and opened at the previous location that same year.

"My buddies and I spent five years renovating it ourselves," King said Monday. "We opened in 2010. We had five great years there but that land got sold and we had to go."

As their website proudly displays, Mattie's Diner is "Jersey born. Charlotte made." And the menu represents that with items including:

  • The Jersey Sandwich, featuring two eggs, taylor ham, american cheese, salt, pepper, ketchup, and homefries.
  • "Ya Might be a Redneck," featuring chicken fried chicken or country ham, sawmill gravy, two eggs, toast and grits
  • Mattie's Mom's Meatloaf, featuring Italian meatloaf, stuffed with mozzarella, marinara,  and grilled onions,
  • And of course, shakes and floats

Many of the regulars are also back.

"It’s a true old-school diner. You are not going to be able to find it anywhere else like this really in Charlotte," Curtis Smith said Monday just as he finished a salmon omelet.

"The food is great! It has always been great," said Sheilla Phillip. "We drove all the way from Monroe to eat breakfast here with Mattie and Rossie.

The diner is open every day from 7 a.m. through 9 p.m. and now features online ordering and new vegan options.

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