Following Closure, Jersey City’s Brownstone Diner to Reopen as Life Pancake Company

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Life Pancake Company 426 Jersey Avenue Jersey City
After a change in ownership and a renovation, Brownstone Diner and Pancake Factory expects to reopen later this year as Life Pancake Company at 426 Jersey Avenue, Jersey City. Photo by Chris Fry/Jersey Digs.

A classic diner in Van Vorst Park will be reopening soon with some new concepts and a more rustic look, but the pancakes that locals have known and loved will still be a big part of the menu.

NJ Advance Media uncovered some details about the upcoming Life Pancake Company, which will be taking the place of the Brownstone Diner and Pancake Factory at 426 Jersey Avenue. The old diner was opened by Pete and Irene Bournias back in 1968, but it suddenly closed earlier this year.


The new owner of the restaurant will be Zoe Bournias, who is the daughter of Pete and Irene and grew up working at the diner. She assures that the classic pancakes the old place was known for will be coming to the new endeavor along with a few new varieties like s’mores or avocado bacon.

Zoe says the new menu will be more focused on breakfast, lunch, and brunch more so than dinner, but Life Pancake Company will still have a full bar that will feature “deranged” Bloody Marys with toppings like fried calamari or grilled cheese. The interior of the restaurant will be more open with higher ceilings and exposed copper for a bit more of a rustic feel.


Life Pancake House just created a new Facebook page and says they are aiming to open in late November, although an official date to start serving customers hasn’t been set.

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20 COMMENTS

  1. Such a weird name…should have just left Brownstone Diner. Someone should start a company just helping businesses come up with names since JC seems to be struggling Salt and Bread…Brick and Dough…Manny’s District Lounge…no creativity.

    But glad to hear the interior will be renovated since it looked dated.

      • Leave the area because I don’t like the names of places? Lol don’t be silly Kevin. Why you like Manny’s District Lounge and Life Pancake Factory? Or you just like everything and have zero standards?

        • As stated in my previous comment, I was speaking on your hate for Jersey City developments as a whole – not on the names of places. I’d address you by your name, too, but you’d rather hide behind your username.

          To answer your other questions, I don’t mind the name Manny’s District Lounge and I don’t believe Life Pancake Factory is the most appetizing name for a diner. Either way, I’m happy to try them out and then form an opinion after.

          • Hey Kevin…good to chat again. Still doesn’t make sense to move out of a city because you don’t approve of all developments. You sound soft as a pillow.

            And the fact that you don’t mind the name Manny’s District Lounge shows your opinion can’t be taken seriously. Hopefully I’m not being too harsh…wouldn’t want you moving out of the city

  2. I understand from Newport Pancake house to The Brownstone Diner after the fire but this I don’t understand. I wish them the best 😉

  3. If a place is a good hang people will come regardless of the name. If a place blows they have can have a creative name and a shitload of hype and people will stay away in droves. Case in point Bread and Salt replacing Pizza Vita.

    • Bread and Salt has pretty horrendous reviews on yelp. For me going out is not just the food, it’s the full experience. Hospitality, ambiance, food. While Bread and Salt seems to have done well in the food department, it seems to consistently fail in hospitality and ambiance. Open at random hours…long lines with subpar service. Funny all you have to throw in “Michelin nominee” and NYTimes review” and suddenly all the groupies will live up and spend crazy money on a slice of pizza. All I see Is the 3 1/2 stars on yelp and hence why you won’t find me standing in line. The laziness shows in the name too.

        • The place is open 5 days a week..We’d, Thurs, Fri, Sun 5:30 – 10. That’s 4 and half hours…add 6 additional hours for Saturday and Sunday. And they regularly can’t even open at 5:30. That about a 25-28 hour work week which would make the French look like workaholics. Yes they spend time baking but…They should NEVER have any excuse for running out of pizza…YOU’RE a pizzeria. Just laziness from a lazy owner.

          If I’m standing in any line for pizza, it’ll be at Lucali’s in Brooklyn where you get exceptional food, ambiance, and hospitality. It’s a shame JC has such low standards when it comes to food.

  4. Pffft…Seems as if Hudson County is specializing in restaurant/lounge mediocrity these days, no matter what silly names they conjure up…

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