Twenty-five years is a significant chunk of time for any business to demonstrate its quality and sustainability. This is especially true in the competitive New Jersey diner business, so when the Florham Park Diner reached its silver anniversary in August, it was cause for celebration and for taking a moment to step back and savor its good food and hospitality.
Located among a cluster of businesses and eateries near the intersection of Ridgedale Avenue and Columbia Turnpike, the Morris County storefront diner is captivating at first glance. When you walk through the front entrance, you’re greeted by friendly staff and a backdrop of cozy, colorful décor. An extensive menu, along with daily specials, includes a vast assortment of breakfast dishes, salads, specialty sandwiches and paninis, burgers, fresh seafood, Italian and Greek platters, and a treasure trove of desserts.
This reporter stopped in for lunch and grabbed a seat at the counter. The meatloaf platter with mashed potatoes was the lunch special that caught my eye. The meal began with a cup of thick, delicious lentil soup. The meatloaf, a familiar item on most New Jersey diner menus, was a thing of beauty: two generous slices—dense, moist and flavorful—covered in brown gravy. Blueberry pie was a wise choice for dessert, trimmed with whipped cream. The coffee hit the spot. It was “three-mugs” good, as each refill was rich and mellow.
According to information posted on its website, the Florham Park Diner has roots that go back to the 1950s. Current owners George and Ginette Grapsas purchased in business in 1991 (the year that marks the front end of the silver anniversary). Due to its popularity in this corner of Morris County, the diner underwent expansions in 2002 and 2014. As reported in an online story published by The Florham Park Eagle, the diner, during the month of August, celebrated its 25th anniversary during with various promotions and events, known as “25 Days of Anniversary Fun.”
Vicki Grapsas, the daughter of George and Ginette, currently manages the business, as her dad (who hails from Greece) is now semi-retired. Vicki, quite literally, grew up in the business and expressed her sense of pride in maintaining the traditions of the family enterprise. This sense of pride is demonstrated in the diner’s courteous, professional service.
The Florham Park Diner is open Monday through Saturday, 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Ample free parking is available in the front and rear of the establishment.
The Florham Park Diner
82 Ridgedale Avenue
Florham Park, NJ 07932
Photos by M. Gabriele