WEST JEFFERSON — Although the name and ownership has changed, the former Bantam Chef building located at 401 N. Jefferson Avenue in West Jefferson will continue to cater to locals by serving familiar customer favorites.
The restaurant, which is now called Hometown Diner, is owned by local Penny Barker.
Barker is no stranger to the restaurant business. She operated the Smithey’s location on the BackStreet in West Jefferson, as well as a Lansing location.
“I just wanted Bantam Chef to be able to be continued like it always was,” Barker said. “And that is how I came up with the name ‘Hometown Diner.’”
At the restaurant, Barker plans to provide the same style of food that Bantam Chef owner Shirley Powers served. Her plan for Hometown Diner is to keep the food simple and traditional, as it was in the past.
The menu for Hometown Diner will contain items that were featured at Bantam Chef, with the addition of the original recipe Smithey burger as well as home- cooked meals on nights that the restaurant will be open for dinner.
An example of a home-cooked meal would be meatloaf and mashed potatoes, roast beef or chicken pot pie along with sides such as green beans, macaroni and cheese, sweet potatoes or boiled cabbage. There will be homemade soups each day with different salad options. Barker plans to serve baked potatoes as a side item for those who would prefer them over french fries.
The menu will also have casseroles and homemade desserts including pies, cobbler, chocolate eclairs and banana pudding.
Other desserts such as ice cream, milkshakes and freshly baked cookies will be available daily.
According to Barker, Hometown Diner will be closed Sunday and Monday. Hours of operation will be Tuesdays and Wednesdays 6 a.m. until 3 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. These hours are subject to change and Barker may open on Mondays in the future or adding additional home-cooked meals throughout the week at lunch or dinner time.
She plans to have homestyle dinner plates ready by 5 p.m. and available for people to pick up after work.
There will be seating available both inside the building and outside on the patio.
Barker said she plans to open for business by the weekend of Sept. 25, which is subject to change.
For more information about Hometown Diner, its menu and hours of operation visit the Facebook page @WJ Hometown Diner or call the restaurant at (336) 846-7888.