Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Harty's Diner - Norwich

61 Heigham Street

Opening hours
Monday to Friday - 7am till 1.30pm
Saturday - 7am till 12.15pm

I discovered the amazing breakfast at Harty's Diner back in September 2010, it still remains one of my favourite places so I decided to write a more up to date review.

 The big breakfast costs £5.70, the small breakfast £4.20 and extras are 90p each.

They were recently awarded the five year certificate for consistently achieving a five star rating of food hygiene. 

This is the main seating area, through the archway by the door is another more secluded area. The interior is well lit and nicely laid out, a great place to sit and enjoy a spot of breakfast.

Squeezy sauce bottles, condiments and a classic sugar dispenser can be found on each table.

A coffee here costs just £1.50.

I ordered the big breakfast with black pudding and mushrooms as extras, it comes with bread and butter too. This is a real working man's breakfast that tastes superb and always looks great when it arrives, I love this breakfast!

The bacon ended up between these fluffy white slices of bread, delicious!

I do love tinned tomatoes and they go perfectly with this breakfast, great mushrooms too.

Nice plump sausages and juicy bacon.

A nice slice of black pudding and beans. You can choose between beans or tomatoes but they are always happy to serve half and half, an option I always go for.

The eggs and fried bread are always presented this way here, the tell tale sign of a Harty's breakfast!

Crispy golden fried bread and nice runny yolks.

I first discovered Harty's Diner in September 2010 (read that review here) and it was the first breakfast I got really excited about since starting my blog. The diner had a nice atmosphere and the workers that frequented it seemed to all know it was the place to go for a delicious and affordable breakfast. Over five years on I decided to return and write a new review for one of my favourite Norwich cafes, the perfect excuse to try that amazing Harty's breakfast once more! As they open nice and early I was able to call in before going to work, I parked up outside and headed inside once more...

Upon entering - The diner is clean and bright with nicely spaced out tables, off to one side through an archway is one more secluded table. The menu can be found above the counter where you place your order and pay, cutlery can be found here too so be sure to take some before sitting down. Each table has a small tray with a neatly clustered selection of condiments, sauces and a classic sugar pourer. Harty's diner is a firm favourite for many of Norwich's workers who frequently stop by here for breakfast. It's really nice to hear the banter between the customers and the owner Jim as he delivers breakfasts and clears tables. The ordering process here is nice and straightfoward, the diner is a nice environment to spend time in and it certainly has heaps of character. 9/10

Service - Jim and his wife seem to have created a system at Harty's Diner that works beautifully, they never appear flustered, the place always looks spotless and you never have to wait very long before the food arrives. I placed my order and was given options on fried bread or toast and beans or tomatoes, Jim is happy to offer half and half on the beans and tomatoes so definitely a good option and you receive a generous amount of both. I paid and sat down with a nice white coffee, next the food arrived looking superb as always. The service here is friendly, efficient and you're made to feel welcome. 9/10

Contents - 2 sausages, 2 bacon, 1 slice of black pudding, 2 fried eggs, 2 slices of fried bread, mushrooms, tinned tomatoes, beans and a slice of buttered bread. 9/10

Presentation - There's a distinct way the items are presented at Harty's Diner. The eggs sit with the fried bread laying gently above them, the bacon and sausages are together and beside them the beans, mushrooms and tomatoes. It always looks nicely cooked and I've never spotted an overcooked or split yolk here. 9/10

The food - The pork sausages served here are plump and juicy with a nice firm texture, the bacon is great too, nice big slices cooked on the griddle. The black pudding was a standard slice cooked just right and the mushrooms were deep fried and tasty. The fried bread is always perfect here, golden and crispy but not holding excess oil. I laid the nicely cooked fried eggs on top of the fried bread, as I cut through the eggs a nice runny yolk seeped out. The tinned tomatoes go perfectly with this breakfast and always arrive in good shape without flooding the plate. The beans were nice and hot and the sliced white bread was really fresh and fluffy. A classic builders breakfast that would set you up for the day and should you be suffering from a hangover I'm convinced this would be the best cure. 10/10

Value for money - The large breakfast cost £5.70, extras were 90p each and a coffee cost £1.50. The bill came to £9, the breakfast tasted great and I didn't eat again until the evening, well worth the money! 9/10

Veggie option - Yes

Overall - Harty's Diner remains one of my favourite breakfast establishments in Norwich. The workmen and locals flock here for good reason, the breakfast is consistently excellent, the service is efficient and friendly and the diner has a great atmosphere. Because of this Harty's Diner continues to successfully exist as it has for many years now and it certainly offers something far more special than you will ever find in Costa or Wetherspoons. If you haven't been to Harty's Diner yet then be sure to give it a look, I can't wait to return again! 9/10


  1. Now thats a nice brekko, the fried bread looks absolutely perfect. I'd like to see what their bubble is like.

    1. Their homemade bubble is really nice, I tried it on a previous visit.

    2. Ah right, one for the note book then.

  2. I don't know what the capabilities of blogspot.com are, whether you can do polls or not, but if you can then there might be some interest in trying to find out what IS the perfect breakfast. I know you've said that you just mark things as you find them based on your own opinions, and that's obviously fair enough - but are you looking for THE perfect breakfast? :) As an example, and yes, a sample size of 1, I'd always take scrambled over fried, tomatoes over beans, and I detest undercooked breakfast meats. Sausages should be browned all over, and bacon crisp.

    Just an idea, as I say. I know a few forums which I use will allow user polls, but as I said at the start, I have no idea of the capabilities of blogspot.

    1. Although I started the blog as my search for the perfect breakfast, I have discovered on my journey that there are different styles of breakfasts that I now enjoy, because of this it's difficult to pin down the perfect breakfast.

      For example on a builders breakfast in a traditional cafe I prefer tinned tomatoes but in a cafe/bar type place I prefer vine ripened. Although the scores still remain I feel the blog has become more of an informative resource for anyone trying to find out information on a particular place I've visited. I like the poll idea though, maybe something I can use on my facebook page to get peoples opinions, cheers!

  3. Another fantastic breakfast at Harty`s

  4. Went to Harty's on Saturday following your recommendation. It was full when I got there but worth the wait, wish I had tried the bubble but everything else was lovely anyway.