Teaneck Native Opens Galactic-Themed Burger Restaurant in Fair Lawn
Entrepreneur credits his experience working on Cedar Lane as inspiration.
Picture a burger topped with sautéed mushrooms, a jumbo onion ring, Swiss and American cheese, and ranch dressing. It's called the "Neptune Burger," and it's landing in Fair Lawn soon.
Paradise Platters—an eatery with a solar system-themed menu—is preparing to open shop in the borough at 22-20 Broadway. Jaffar Wahdat, one of three managing partners who also operate locations in Lake Hiawatha and South Bound Brook, said 20 percent of the Lake Hiawatha site's customers come from Fair Lawn because of the borough's proximity to Route 80 and Route 20.
"We want to save them the trip," said Wahdat, a 31-year-old Teaneck native and current Dumont resident.
Wahdat's first job came at Bischoff's ice cream shop on Cedar Lane, at age 16. He says his interest in managing a business was partially inspired by the changes that have occurred on Cedar Lane.
Cedar Lane is now a "ripe environment for growth," Wahdat said.
"I know there's a lot of history on Cedar Lane," he said.
"The Cedar Lane that was in the 80s is so much different now," Wahdat said, citing wider streets and more businesses.
Wahdat studied physics at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, inspiring his restaurant's galactic menu. Besides for the popular Neptune Burger, the menu of Paradise Platters (currently called Kabab Paradise in Lake Hiawatha) includes the "Galactic Gyro Platter" (lamb, chicken and falafel versions) and "Solar Wings" (spicy and mild flavors).
In South Bound Brook, Wahdat and his partners—including "Master Chef" Fahim Saleh and "Commander" Ali W. Saleh—operate Paradise Bakery, which sells Afghani bread. Wahdat's title is "Mission Specialist," and together, the trio forms a "shuttle mission crew." Fahim has 25 years of catering experience, Wahdat said.
Wahdat's father worked as a pharmaceutical importer in Afghanistan, and since he was young Jaffar collaborated with Ali on business ventures.
"Entrepreneurship runs in my blood," Wahdat said.
Visit http://www.kababparadise.com/ for a preview of what Paradise Platters will look like.