Taste of the Town: Daddio’s Diner owners make restaurant dream reality
By NICOLE WESKERNA - email@example.com
BATAVIA – Terry Beltran likens the experience of dining at Daddio’s Diner in Batavia to stopping by Grandma’s house for breakfast.
Scott “Daddio” and Terry “Mommio” Beltran, who have owned the 1950’s-themed Daddio’s Diner for about seven years, said they love the family-friendly atmosphere at the restaurant and consider many of their longtime customers as just that – family.
“It’s a true neighborhood diner,” Terry Beltran said. “We know 90 percent of our customers by their first name.”
They also count their employees as family members, too. Their daughters, Tess, 22, and Kristi, 16, spend their summers working at the diner. Tess even designed the restaurant’s menus.
The Beltrans said owning a restaurant had been a dream of theirs since they first got married. Both met while working in the restaurant industry – Scott Beltran was a chef, and Terry Beltran was a waitress.
Scott Beltran had been a chef by trade at upscale golf course restaurants and hotels. Terry Beltran said she always was the “Betty Crocker” type of mother who enjoyed baking and raising her family. She also is a folk artist who used to run a business on the side.
Before the Beltrans moved to St. Charles, they said they often gravitated toward the Tri-Cities area and liked to dine at their favorite restaurant in Batavia. When the owner of that restaurant decided to sell, the Beltrans found their chance to live out their dream.
“We never thought we’d have the opportunity to own our favorite diner,” Terry Beltran said.
Customers usually can hear music from the 1950s and ’60s at the restaurant, and classic vinyl records and album covers are scattered on the restaurant’s walls. So many 1950s-themed knickknacks are on display that the Beltrans came up with an “I Spy” game that customers can play while waiting for their orders.
Daddio’s Diner serves vinyl record-sized pancakes and has become known for skillets, such as the La Bomba Skillet, which is made with diced potatoes, ham, onions, peppers, jalapeños, chorizo, cilantro, and melted Colby and Pepper Jack cheeses.
Daddio’s Diner caters for parties, and the restaurant is available for people to rent for parties on Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights.
It now is open for dinner Tuesday through Friday. Lunch and dinner menu choices include specialty burgers, such as the Bleu Moon Cheeseburger made with melted bleu cheese and topped with onion rings. Salads and sandwiches, such as the Swiss Pot Roast Panini – made with pot roast, Swiss and mozzarella cheeses, and grilled onions on grilled Italian bread – also are menu options.
Waitress Bekah Gustin said before customers even order their food, many will call “dibbs” on a Mommio’s chocolate chip pecan cookie.
“They don’t want to miss out,” she said.
As important as family and food are at Daddio’s Diner, giving back to the community is just as much of a priority for the Beltrans.
The diner has been home to many fundraisers for schools and churches in the seven years the Beltrans have been owners. Terry Beltran remembers one fundraiser a few years ago where they expected to serve about 300 people, but they ended up serving 800 people in just three hours, helping raise $7,000.
“It builds that community feel,” Terry Beltran said. “It helps us build off of each other.”
Daddio's Diner, 134 W. Wilson St., Batavia, is open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday; 6 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday; and 6:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 630-879-5299 or visit www.daddiosdiner.biz.
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