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With its stainless steel exterior and red accents, stepping into the new Valley Diner may make customers feel like they are stepping back in time.
The diner, at 567 Valley Road, has a traditional set of bar stools running down the length of the restaurant and is about the size of a railroad car. It harkens back to a mid-century feeling.
Township officials and Mayor Robert Parisi cut the ribbon on the latest addition to the downtown area on Tuesday
The owner of Valley Diner works double duty as its chef: Eric Pitusiak. Originally from Poland, Pitusiak said customers will find traditional diner fare there, including hamburgers, shakes, chicken fingers, soups and salads, but also traditional Polish dishes such as pirogies and stuffed cabbage.
The diner had been sitting vacant until Pitusaik moved in near the end of December. He cleaned the place up and opened for business in April.
“I love this place,” said Pitusaik. “The style is homey. We don’t see [diners like this] anymore. ... I have customers that came over here as kids.”
Pitusaik said he had graduated from the New York Restaurant School in 1998, and has been working at various places ever since.
When it comes to the best item on the menu, Pitusaik did not hesitate to say pirogies.
“It’s the way we make them, that’s why they taste the best,” said Pitusaik. “That’s why they sell the best.”