Senator Diegnan presents resolution to Sherban’s Diner

New Jersey, which has more diners than any other state, is commonly referred to as the Diner Capital of the World.

Among its highly regarded family-owned establishments is Sherban’s Diner in South Plainfield, where Peter Ganiaris is celebrating his 50th year as owner of the restaurant, which opened in 1959.

To commemorate the anniversary, Senator Patrick J. Diegnan Jr., Assemblyman Rob Karabinchak and Assemblyman Sterley Stanley recently presented a Joint Legislative Resolution from the Senate and General Assembly to Ganiaris.

“Peter epitomizes the American dream,” said Diegnan, a lifelong South Plainfield resident who delivered the framed resolution to Ganiaris at the diner this week. “Under his exemplary stewardship and through some very challenging times, Sherban’s Diner has been a cornerstone of our borough.”


In an interview for with Michael Gabriele, the author of two books about the Garden State’s diner history, Ganiaris recounted coming to the United States from the Greek Island of Chios at the age of 16.

“He told the classic New Jersey entrepreneurial diner tale,” Gabriele wrote, noting Ganiaris learned the restaurant business from relatives. “He started as a dishwasher, saved his money, and through hard work and determination, ended up owning his own diner.”

Sherban’s has enjoyed a longstanding tradition as a favored dining destination and overcome adversity in recent years, navigating the COVID-19 pandemic and significant damage from Tropical Storm Ida, which dumped nine inches of rain on South Plainfield.

According to the New York Times, wind damage to Sherban’s roof resulted in ceiling tiles and carpeting getting soaked, before “the nearby Bound Brook spilled its banks and flooded a 120-seat banquet hall in the basement.”

In a story examining how Central Jersey restaurants are rebounding one year after Ida, the Home News Tribune reported this week that upon reopening six months after the pandemic, business at Sherban’s “was down 50%” and that now “with inflation, lingering pandemic concerns and a loss of corporate clientele, it’s down 30%.”


The Joint Resolution from the State Legislature recognizes that Sherban’s Diner has “displayed remarkable resiliency” while creating a model to emulate and setting a standard of excellence to which others might strive.

“Sherban’s Diner is the perfect dining tradition of great food for breakfast, lunch, or dinner,” reads a message on the diner’s website. “Our family-friendly restaurant offers something to please everyone, including hearty breakfasts available all day, our famous cucumber salad or our delectable cheesecakes.”

Diegnan thanked Ganiaris for his five decades of serving the borough community and beyond.

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