Northern Kentucky Diner Named One of America's Best by 'Food & Wine' Magazine

Covington's Anchor Grill gets a nod in the magazine's list of "The Best Diners in Every State."

The Anchor Grill was named the best diner in Kentucky, according to Food & Wine. - PHOTO: EMERSON SWOGER
Photo: Emerson Swoger
The Anchor Grill was named the best diner in Kentucky, according to Food & Wine.

If you need a goetta fix anytime day or night, one Northern Kentucky diner offers the best bites in the country, at least according to a recent write-up in Food & Wine magazine.

The national publication released its list of "The Best Diners in Every State," and named Anchor Grill as Kentucky's top spot.

click to enlarge Anchor Grill's "Band-Box" jukebox, featuring Barbie singing lead. - PHOTO: MEGAN WADDEL
Photo: Megan Waddel
Anchor Grill's "Band-Box" jukebox, featuring Barbie singing lead.
The cult-favorite eatery has been open for more than seven decades, offering 24/7 service and one of the best jukeboxes in the city (according to both CityBeat staff and readers). Famous for its, “We may doze, but never close" sign, the menu serves up breakfast favorites, double deckers and diner platters like country-fried steak.

But the Anchor Grill is renowned for its goetta — the Glier's Goetta factory is right across the street — available in omelets, on sandwiches or as a side. 

Food & Wine calls out the grill's GLT, or goetta, lettuce and tomato sandwich, as a favorite in its
write-up:

Got goetta? Any breakfast joint in Northern Kentucky worth your attention serves fat slabs—fried crisp and golden brown—of this hyper-regional staple, brought to the region by German immigrants many generations ago. Dating back to a time when meat was too expensive to eat straight up, oats were used to stretch things out; think British sausages and their noticeable use of breadcrumbs, and you're getting there. Impolite bystanders might refer to goetta as grey mush, but true connoisseurs know better. Faced with a well-seasoned slice of the stuff, nicely fried, with your eggs and hash browns, you won't even miss the more standard breakfast meats. Not that you have to wake up for breakfast to eat goetta. At the vintage Anchor Grill, one of the better diners in Covington, the GLT (goetta, lettuce, and tomato) sandwich is an all-day (and all night) favorite.
And this isn't the first time the GLT has been mentioned in national media. In 2019, the New Yorker's food critic named the sandwich one of the best things she'd eaten that decade.

As for the rest of the Food & Wine list, Ohio's best diner is Boyd & Wurthmann, located in Holmes County aka Amish Country. And the best diner in Indiana is Nick's Kitchen, in Huntington.  See the full results for "The Best Diners in Every State" at foodandwine.com.

The Anchor Grill is located at 438 W. Pike St., Covington. Searchable on Facebook.

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