Erie couple celebrates 50 years of New York Lunch

Local News

It’s been a staple on East Avenue for a half century. We’re talking about New York Lunch.

50 years ago a couple took over the keys to the building and today, customers they’ve seen for a number of years and those who played a major role in keeping the business running came to celebrate.

A milestone is celebrated, due to a couple serving food on Erie’s east side since 1970.

“Anything I did in the 50 years worked out good. I am happy with my family, my people and my friends and if I could, I would stay 50 more.” Nina Paliouras said.

Nina and her husband Stephen took over the business, which was previously owned by a family member in January 50 years ago. But, the sense of family tradition is still kept alive.

“My kids also grew up in here and now we bring my grandkids, so this has always been in our family.” said Rita Pappas, the daughter of the owner.

“My grandkids love it when we are here. Me and Pap, they love to come see us and he loves it.”

Not only will you recognize the faces behind the counter, but if you look around the restaurant, you’ll find different artifacts that signify how long customers have been coming through the door.

“It’s all the customers who have been coming here for 25 years or more and this countertop here is everyone else, but we have one more. We have one more special one we’ll be bringing up this summer and it’s for all the customers who have been coming here for 50 years or more.” said Gus Paliouras.

The relationships built inside the East Avenue lunch spot have gone far beyond the walls.

“All my customers are my friends now,” said Stephen Paliouras. “I like to come back here and see my friends, we have good support.”

The owners’ son Gun now runs the business, but don’t let that fool you, Stephen and Nina are in here every day taking orders and cooking up some of their signature favorites.

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