the houston family has owned diner's delight for 50 years. photo by david kovaluk

Landmark Diner's Delight serves some of STL's best soul food

This month marks the 50th anniversary of Diner’s Delight, a hallowed soul food joint tucked away at 1504 S. Compton Ave., just south of Midtown. Camouflaged by a totally ordinary exterior, the kitchen quietly turns out some of the best soul food in the city. 

Since opening in 1969, the Houston family has served customer favorites like Salisbury steak and an original fried chicken recipe that has never changed. Other winners include hard-fried wings, with sauces ranging from a spicy honey glaze to straight-ahead Buffalo, and a tasty peach cobbler

Jo Houston ran Diner’s Delight for decades, but her sons, Greg and Markeith, are in charge now. “It’s a struggle, like any business. But if you can make it in the restaurant business, you can probably do anything,” Greg said. 

It hasn’t always been smooth sailing, but the Houstons have made it work for half a century.

Adam Rothbarth is a staff writer at Sauce Magazine.