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Erica and Hale Cole-Tucker, front in left photo, owners of Tucker's in Hooksett opened the new diner Monday with one of their primary investors, Kevin Mallette, in back. (RYAN O'CONNOR/Union Leader Correspondent)

New breakfast, lunch diner opens in Hooksett

HOOKSETT — Last year, Hale and Erica Cole-Tucker sold Maddie's, a successful Salem diner they owned and operated for six years. The goal, said Erica, was to test life outside of the restaurant industry.

Apparently, the test came back negative.

"We thought we wanted to get out of the restaurant business, and after taking almost a year off we just really missed it, so we decided to get back into it, and that's what brought us here," said Erica Cole-Tucker.

Monday, the couple opened the doors to Tucker's, Hooksett's newest breakfast and lunch diner, which is located in the same building that originally housed a Burger King before Veano's Italian Kitchen and Four Seasons Diner both inhabited the location.

"This spot came for sale, and we knew the area, and we just knew there wasn't a breakfast or lunch place in Hooksett, so we felt this would be a really good fit here," said Cole-Tucker, who noted she and her husband lived in Auburn for years.

"Our mission is to bring healthy food to Hooksett," she said. "We're obviously going have the breakfast and lunch classics that everybody expects, but we also want to offer the organic and local options as well, so we always say it's great food, but it has a fun flare to it as well."

Perhaps just as important as an emphasis on quality food, Cole-Tucker said she, her husband and investors like Kevin Mallette have placed a significant emphasis on strong personable service. The restaurant's motto, in fact, is "Good Eats, Great People."

"It's our team here that really makes Tucker's what it's going to be," she said. "We have such an amazing team, and I think people are going to want to come back here, not just for the food, but for the team as well."

The restaurant's dining room is open for breakfast and lunch, from 7 a.m through 2 p.m., seven days a week, but Cole-Tucker said there's an added benefit to being located at the site of a former fast-food restaurant.

"The best part is we have a pickup window," she said. "It's not takeout, but you can call in your order and just drive around and pick it up, so it's great for people on the go, or who don't want to get the kids out of the car, or who just want to get to work."

The restaurant's name is a shortened version of the owners' last name.

"We were going to do 'Cole-Tucker's,' but we thought that might be a mouthful, so we shortened it to 'Tucker's,'" said Erica. "And the last piece to this is that we brought on a team of investors, so we have one of our investors (Mallette) in here now learning everything he needs to know so he can hopefully branch off, and we can have some more (Tucker's)."

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