On Monday, February 11, after four months of being closed, the Milford Diner was officially sold to Gus Koutoufaris and Steve Myers with hopes of a reopening in March. With minor changes to the diner itself, Koutoufaris and Myers hope to restore the restaurant to its former self and bring back a tradition that has been a part of Milford for over 60 years.
Originally built by the Rosen family in the 1950s as the Hollywood Diner, the business was purchased by Steve Patmion in the 1970s. During the 1980s, partners Frank Draper, Mihn Tran, Herschel Billings and Jay Moody purchased the business out of bankruptcy court and in 2011 it was purchased by Michael Gklotsos.
A native of Greece, Mr. Koutoufaris came to the United States in 1969 at the age of fifteen where he began to work in his uncle’s restaurant in Dover, Delaware. In 1974, Gus took over the business and ran several successful businesses including Bay Fisherman and Captain John Paul’s. Business partner Steve Myers is an entrepreneur that owns several businesses including The Monkey’s Trunk in Ocean City, MD and Cash in a Flash in Harrington, DE. With Koutoufaris’ experience in the restaurant industry and Myers’ business experience the two decided that the reopening of the Milford Diner would be a successful new venture.
Looking to open at the end of March, the partners will be refurbishing much of the inside by replacing the floors, reupholstering the booths and seats and cleaning the kitchen. They stress that the original section of the diner will remained unchanged, as it has since first built in the 1950s.
“We are looking forward to the opening,” commented Mr. Koutoufaris. “I have been in Milford for 40 years and I know what the people want; good food, plenty of it and at a reasonable price.”
The owners expect to hire between 40 and 45 employees as they are committing to serve breakfast, lunch and dinner from 6am to 9pm, 7 days a week. Serving the traditional menu, Koutoufaris will also be expanding dining choices to include more Italian and Greek dishes.
“The Milford Diner is such a landmark for this town and there are already so many people talking and excited about the reopening,” commented Myers. “We will be up and running as soon as we can.”