Gert's Lil' Diner opened in 1984 on Beatties Ford Rd in a small trailer on the side of the road. It was owned by Gertrude Randson and was open for breakfast and lunch only. It was a two-person operation with Gert doing all of the cooking and one waitress doing all of the serving.
Walking into Gert's was like stepping back in time. The interior featured green Leatherette booths. green and yellow Formica table tops, and quilted chrome on the wall in front of the kitchen--all the makings of a 1950's diner. Gert's featured some of the best home-cooking soul food in the area. The menu usually featured five meats and eight vegetables, along with several homemade desserts. Items such as smothered chicken, steamed cabbage, collard greens, pigs feet, and okra with tomatoes were among the standard offerings. Gert's also had the best cornbread in the city.
Gert's would close in 1995. Gert retired at that point, but soon returned to work at the short-lived Cotton Street Diner on South Blvd. There she was in charge of all baked goods (including her famous biscuits and peach cobbler).