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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The 1940s diner that traveled 1,850 miles to serve College Station

Hullabaloo+Diner+was+built+in+New+York+and+transfered+to+College+Station+in+the+1940s+to+bring+customers+live+music+and+country+style+meals.
Photo by Photo by Casey O’Neal

Hullabaloo Diner was built in New York and transfered to College Station in the 1940s to bring customers live music and country style meals.

Built in the late 1930s, Hullabaloo Diner has traveled 1,850 miles to serve homemade country style meals to the residents of the College Station area.
Hullabaloo Diner started as a restaurant from upstate New York.
It was restored and shipped out in the 1940s by owners Sydney and Rich Steinbacher to its current location on Wellborn Road, just five miles away from Texas A&M. Breakfast is served all day and consists of omelets, pancakes, biscuits and gravy, among other items. The diner menu includes sandwiches, such as their famous Philly cheesesteak, pizzas, salads and more.
Because of Rich Steinbacher’s experience in the restaurant business, the couple said they decided to bring the diner to life and open it up for business.
“My husband, who is from Philadelphia, has many years of experience in the restaurant industry, so we wanted to get involved and help restore it,” Sydney Steinbacher said.
These homemade meals have even caught the attention of Guy Fieri, TV host of Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.” Meals including the Roman Sausage sandwich, Philly cheesesteak, Mexican Green Chili Burger and the Kitchen Sink Omelet were all sampled on Fieri’s show. Sydney Steinbacher said the diner’s name has its roots in both its current lo- cation and the Aggie War Hymn.
“We named it Hullabaloo because it’s a part of the fight song and additionally it is parallel to the train track,” Sydney Steinbacher said. “Hullabaloo means commotion, so it just fit.”
On the property, there is an old homestead bar where live music is played by Hullabaloo’s main performer, Jack Houston, during the day on Saturdays and Sundays.
“Weekends are busy, so we keep live music going in the afternoons to offer a better experience of waiting to the customers,” Sydney Steinbacher said.
Sydney Steinbacher said Houston plays a wide variety of genres that everyone can relate to.
“He appeals to everyone, because he plays a little bit of everything,” Sydney Steinbacher said. “Jack say he only plays oldies, but he will play artists from Lyle Lovett to John Denver to James Taylor, and even to some more current artists.”
Leah Wilson, nutritional science sophomore, said she loves the memory she shared with her family from the first time she experienced Hullabaloo.
“My family and I really bonded over the live music and the board games we played as we waited for our table,” Wilson said. “We even bonded over how fantastic the biscuits and gravy were.”
Hullabaloo Diner has developed a loyal customer base, some of whom are Aggies who say they can’t get enough of the place.
Benny Gallaway, Class of 1968, said he comes to Hullabaloo Diner three times a week and enjoys conversing with the friendly workers.
“I like the Texas hospitality and the friendliness here the most,” Gallaway said. “It’s a great place to eat good food and relax.”
Gallaway said he has experience with what is considered great seafood, but has never experienced anything like Hullabaloo Diner’s shrimp and grits.
“Hullabaloo’s shrimp and grits are better than New Orleans’,” Gallaway said. “I’m a marine biologist with a Ph.D. and have traveled all over the Gulf Coast, but the shrimp and grits here are better than anything I’ve ever had on the Gulf Coast.”
Wilson said Hullabaloo Diner is great for students because customers get a good amount of food for an affordable price.
“It’s perfect for students because it’s a cheap place to eat with lots of food,” Wilson said. “You will never leave there with a hungry stomach.”

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