On any given day, Ozram (John) Koc might be doing anything from helping out in the kitchen to doing repairs at his family-owned New Hope Star Diner in New Hope.
He was only 15 when his father started managing the Hillsborough Star Diner in Hillsborough, N.J., and hired him as a dishwasher. Since then his family purchased that diner and he came up through the ranks, doing every job on the premises including creating some of the recipes.
Four years ago his family purchased the former Eagle Diner, renovated it, changed the name to New Hope Star Diner, made Koc manager and installed the from-scratch menu that has been so popular at the Hillsborough restaurant.
“Everything here is homemade,” Koc said including soups, desserts and the home fries that accompany the all-day breakfast menu. Pancakes are made from scratch – no mixes – and the restaurant’s popular cheese bread and cinnamon bread are baked on the premises in order to be included in the traditional salad bar.
Fresh ingredients are delivered regularly and even the burger meat is never frozen.
The menu at the Star Diner is traditional with a large number of breakfast dishes and specialty omelets and more than a dozen specialty half-pound burgers. Those include a Greek burger with feta cheese and tzatziki sauce, a Trenton burger with pork roll, a Brooklyn burger with Swiss cheese and bacon, a giant burger with two cheeseburgers on the roll, and a Canadian burger with mozzarella and Canadian bacon.
Entrees range from shrimp scampi to New York strip steak, shish kabob to chicken cordon bleu. House specialties include chicken or flounder a la New Hope, with sautéed chicken breast or fish filet topped with mushrooms and tomatoes and finished with a garlic basil marinara sauce.
Quesadillas, wraps, fajitas and open-faced sandwiches round out the menu.
The Star Diner is known for its housemade desserts including cheesecakes, which come in a variety of flavors including plain and Oreo cookie.
Koc offers a variety of vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options including veggie wraps and veggie burgers. He and his wife, Gizam, are in the process of developing a keto menu for those following a low-carb diet.
The restaurant has enough seating to host holiday parties, offers catering, and home delivery service through Grubhub, Uber Eats and Doordash.
NEW HOPE STAR DINER
6522 York Road, New Hope
6 a.m.-10 p.m. Sun.-Thu., 6 a.m.-11 p.m. Fri., 6 a.m.-midnight Sat.
Breakfast $3.99-$11.99, sandwiches $4.99-$12.99, entrees $12.99-$22.99.