The wait is over: Former server bringing Grand Canyon back to Heights

Orders up: A former waiter at the Grand Canyon Diner in Brooklyn Heights, Gonzalo “Victor” Carreto, is reopening the eatery later this year, only this time he’s coming back as the boss.
Community News Group / Colin Mixson

This restaurant owner is done waiting.

A former waiter at the Grand Canyon Diner — the Montague Street staple famous for its weirdly weighted seven-ounce burgers that closed its doors in 2015 — will reopen the eatery later this year, only this time he looks forward to greeting his old patrons as the boss!

“I miss all my old customers,” said Gonzalo “Victor” Carreto. “Now they don’t know that I’m coming back as an owner!”

Carreto took orders at the Montague Street restaurant between Henry and Clinton streets for 15 years, before leaving to purchase the Mex Carroll’s Diner on Columbia Street in 2013.

He and his partners then bought the Grand Canyon Diner’s Park Slope outpost — then owned by the brother of Carreto’s former boss — a few months later, after the erstwhile waiter decided the eatery had some room for improvement.

“When I took over, what can I say, it wasn’t so busy,” he said.

The one-time server quickly set to work tweaking operations at the Park Slope restaurant, moving the eatery’s opening hours up from 10 am to 7 am to meet the breakfast rush, and expanding the diner’s mostly domestic fare to include recipes from south of the border.

After the Brooklyn’s Heights restaurant closed, Carreto kept his eyes open for an opportunity to return to Montague Street. When another restaurant, Armando’s, closed its doors at 141 Montague — right next door to his former workplace — in May, he knew his long-awaited moment had arrived.

“We never thought we were going to find another place right there,” said Carreto. “Now we have a chance to get back in the area.”

Carreto hopes to reopen the Brooklyn Heights Grand Canyon in September, with a menu very similar to his Park Slope restaurant — American food with some Mexican dishes — although a few minor changes can be expected, he said.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.

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