BROOKVILLE — Mike and Abby Kaltenbach, the new owners of Plyler’s Buffet and Family Restaurant, have a vision and that is to become part of the community.
“We want to focus on the room in the back a little more,” she said. “We’re hoping for some banquets, bigger parties, things like that. We’re definitely planning on getting involved in the community. We have two kids and they go to Brookville so we want to support the community as much as we can.”
“Lots of sports banquets and things, we’d like to see that and we see ourselves sponsoring Little League teams,” he said.
Abby Kaltenbach summed it up saying, “We want this to be our family business, family focus.” Her husband agrees, saying “even when we were living in Florida, we thought no matter what we do we want to just be able to be in the same town as our restaurant, as our kids’ school so we can go all in on it – whether it’s fundraisers for the school or whatever.”
That is the perk of owning a small business, he notes, being able to do what they want. Mike Kaltenbach was a franchise part owner for 11 years in Florida and says what the owners could do was very restricted by corporate.”
Their sons are ages 13 and 8, and both are on board with the new business. Abby and Mike Kaltenbach say they were a bit nervous making the move back to Pennsylvania as the 13-year-old was only 2 years old when they first moved to Florida and the 8-year-old was born in Florida. They put the idea of moving back to Pennsylvania, closer to family, to the two boys and said it was a family decision. Since the move, the two boys are doing well in the Brookville Area School District and have jumped into sports such as swimming and wrestling. They’ve also been at the restaurant helping their mom and dad clean and get ready for this week’s opening.
“They’re going to learn work ethic in that dish room,” dad Mike says. “I started washing dishes when I was 15 years old at Wayside (Inn, Lucinda). That was hard work and I want him to get in that dish room too, learn what it takes to earn a dollar.”
The couple plan to also work with other local businesses and feature items on the menu while noting the local source. He says he wants customers to know that “this item was prepared because of Tom’s Meats or Hollenbaugh’s Hometown Meat market or wherever he can get ingredients locally. “I want people to know I’m using those products,” he said, so they know where their food is coming from.
The two plan to be at the restaurant each day. While Abby will be the face customers see in the front of the restaurant, and taking care of scheduling and payroll, Mike will be in the kitchen cooking up a storm. Mondays, they will be closed to continue with their maintenance projects, the restaurant will be open Tuesdays through Sundays and the Kaltenbachs hope area residents stop in as give this iconic hometown restaurant new life.