A native of Long Island, Stacy Pisone, Founder & COO of Cafeteria Restaurant and Empire Diner, grew up in the vibrant embrace of a large Italian family where the art of entertaining, with food at its heart, was ingrained in her from the very beginning.

Armed with a Bachelor of Science in International Marketing, Stacy made her mark in the bustling streets of New York City. She ventured into the world of nightlife, starting her journey in some of the city’s most renowned and iconic nightclubs. Her tenure at The Roxy during its early days, a beacon of diversity within the LGBTQ+ community, fostered enduring relationships that shaped her path.

From managing VIP entrances to orchestrating events and promotions at The Roxy and later at the Palladium, Stacy immersed herself in the pulse of nightlife for many years. However, her entrepreneurial spirit beckoned her to new horizons, leading her to open her first restaurant, Circa, in the eclectic landscape of the East Village.

Circa was more than just a dining establishment; it was a melting pot where bikers, clubbers, and LGBTQ+ communities converged to savor delicious food and revel in captivating music. In 1998, Stacy embarked on a new culinary adventure by co-founding Cafeteria, a 24-hour haven that seamlessly blended the vibrancy of nightlife with the comfort of a neighborhood eatery. With its signature mac and cheese and inviting ambiance, Cafeteria quickly became a cherished spot where everyone, from LGBTQ+ individuals to celebrities and locals alike, felt embraced and at home.

Continuously evolving with the spirit of inclusivity, Stacy’s dedication to creating a safe and welcoming space for all remains the cornerstone of Cafeteria’s enduring legacy. In 2016, Stacy embarked on her boldest endeavor yet, acquiring the historic Empire Diner. With a reverence for New York’s storied past, she meticulously restored the diner to its former glory, infusing it with old world elegance and charm.

Today, Stacy Pisone culinary legacy endures—a testament to her unwavering commitment to creating spaces where everyone feels at home, embraced, and celebrated. From the vibrant nights of the Roxy to the timeless allure of Empire Diner, her journey is a testament to the power of passion, inclusivity, and good food to unite us all.