Diner on Wheels Rolling in Different Direction

Wednesday, June 22, 2011 - 6:18pm

A diner on wheels that's called West El Paso home is heading in a different direction. The Drifter Diner has been a fixture on the coner of Mesa and Executive for the past few months. Now the owner is closing down and opening a restaurant.

The smell of bacon, chicken and different spices fills the small 1947 RV that was turned into a diner on wheels.

But by the end of this week... the Drifter Diner will be rolling out of the intersection of Mesa and Executive in West El Paso for good.

"i think the city will miss it as kind of like an attraction, people like to drive by and say, 'that looks neat,' said Ian Atkins.

Owner Ian Atkins has been running the diner on wheels for the past year, moving throughout different locations in West El Paso.

"I thought it would really fit in with El Paso," said Atkins. "You get on Texas Street and you see all these old buildings. same in central like at five points so I thought this would be something uniquely El Paso."

In February... the Drifter Diner settled in at its current location.

Ian says he gets about 30 customers a day.

"Most of the people that come here, I know. I have a really good following of regulars," said Atkins.

The Drifter Diner's ever-changing menu on this particular day features five items and a dessert.
the tiny kitchen doesn't give room for much more.

So, what's going to happen to the drifter? Ian says he plans on converting it back to an RV and have it become his vacation home.

It's something Ian says he's looking forward to and he says his customers are eager to see what his new restaurant has to offer.

"We told them about the new place and everybody's excited about that," said Atkins.

Ian says he plans to open his new restaurant... which will be called Tom's... in mid-August.

The restaurant will be located at the corner of Boston and Mesa.

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