Brian and Jenny Walker, owners of the 1844 House, Potsdam, have received GardenShare’s 2013 Growing Community Award for their commitment to using locally produced food at the restaurant.
The Walkers, who re-opened the restaurant as a classic American bistro in 2006, received the award at the 2013 Harvest Social at SUNY Potsdam on Thursday, Nov. 7.
The award recognizes individuals and organizations that have strengthened the community-based food system through their efforts to use local foods.
“Their emphasis on fresh, local produce, meats and cheese helps them create incredible meals while at the same time building awareness of the amazing bounty of our region and boosting our local economy,” GardenShare said of the Walkers in a release.
Past recipients of the award include North Country Public Radio, North Country Grown Cooperative, the UShare program of Canton’s Unitarian Universalist Church, Katherine Lang, Betsy Hodge and Carlton Doane.
GardenShare is a nonprofit that works to combat hunger and improve food security in the north country. This is the 11th year it has given the award.
Lewis County’s first apple orchard had a successful first season [Read more...]
With son at helm, Massey Furniture Barn hits half century [Read more...]
A Rome developer plans to build and open a Precision Wash car wash on a parcel at the Northland Plaza off Eastern Boulevard.
The city Planning Board approved site plans for Evergreen Family FLP, Rome, on Tuesday to build a 3,300-square-foot, five-bay automated car wash on a 0.74-acre parcel near the State CS Employees Federal Credit Union building. Precision Wash already runs automated car washes on Coffeen Street, Washington Street and Route 11 in Evans Mills.
Construction would begin before winter and the business is slated to open in April.
The Watertown City Council still must give a final approval; a public hearing is expected to be scheduled for next month.
The car wash would be open 24 hours, seven days a week and serve as many as 150 vehicles a day, said Timothy M. Hogan, the engineer representing Precision Wash.
Before the vote Tuesday, city officials and the Planning Board expressed concern that Northland Plaza’s parking lot needs an upgrade because of the additional traffic generated by the car wash. The parking lot lacks islands to control flow, they said. “The big thing is doing something with the parking lot,” said Justin Wood of the city’s Engineering Office.
In other action, the Planning Board approved site plans for an 1,800-square-foot, L-shaped expansion at the Quickslee convenience store at 1279 Coffeen St. Before the vote, planners voiced concerns about traffic, the lack of landscaping and the need for a sidewalk along that section of Coffeen Street. After a 90-minute discussion, engineer Christopher E. Boyes agreed to install a no-left-turn onto Coffeen Street at the entrance closest to Interstate 81. He also agreed to install the sidewalk and plant some trees to act as a buffer zone for Ontario Village apartments.
Council members are expected to vote on the site plans next month.
Sgt. Pepperoni’s NY Pizza — known years ago for its taco pizzas, jumbo-sized chicken wings and steak subs — is back in business after being shuttered for 12 years.
The pizzeria, which closed at the Paddock Arcade in 2001, reopened Sunday at the former Soluri’s Pizza building, 526 Factory St. The building was bought from Robert Soluri Jr. by co-owners Shannon M. Exford and Anthony M. Heaney this fall. The sale marked the end of an era for Soluri’s, which originally was opened in 1970 by Robert E. Soluri Sr. at 988 LeRay St.
Customers who were sad to see Sgt. Pepperoni’s leave are enthusiastic about its comeback, said Mrs. Exford, who launched the original business at 566 State St. in 1991 with her late husband, C. Louis Partridge. At that time, Mr. Heaney was an 18-year-old employee who delivered pizzas.
This summer Mr. Heaney, now 38, and Mrs. Exford, 42, decided to team up and revive Sgt. Pepperoni’s when they saw Soluri’s was for sale.
“It’s been like watching an old TV show for customers,” he said. “They’re going to watch it, even though it’s dated. We were around for a long time doing our own thing.”
Comments about the comeback have surfaced on the business’s Facebook page, said Mrs. Exford, who also owns accounting firm Exford & Exford on Mechanic Street.
“In the ’90s we had to earn our business and it built up slowly, whereas now, people are knocking on the door before we’re open,” she said. “Someone commented on Facebook that their dad used to order pizza at our State Street store. Now they’re going to do the same thing with their son.”
The eatery’s time-honored menu features “super jumbo wings” cooked in a charcoal barbecue pit; 10 uncooked wings weigh about two pounds. Pizza of the month specials will feature chicken cordon bleu and “Big Mac” varieties. The latter is Mrs. Exford’s latest creation.
“It’s made with special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles and onions,” she said. “We’ll never be the home of the $5 pizza here, because we take pride in using quality ingredients.”
Its dining area will stay open until 3 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays, catering to night owls.
Mr. Soluri Sr., 81, said that while he is disappointed Soluri’s Pizza has closed, it enjoyed a strong 43-year run in the community. His son, Robert Jr., took over the family-owned business in the early 1990s.
“There were no shops delivering when I decided to open in 1969,” he said. “All of the news reporters got together and ordered pizzas from all of the shops and rated them in the Times, and only two were rated as halfway decent. So I knew I had a chance.”
The Soluri family took pride in making pizzas with quality ingredients, he said, and built a strong following of customers because of it.
“I used to have people order every night open, and they were very loyal customers,” Mr. Soluri said.
Sgt. Pepperoni’s is open from 4 to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 3 p.m. to 3 a.m. Friday and Saturday.
-Ted Booker, Watertown Daily Times
Try it for two weeks and you’ll be hooked, claims the owner of a new gym.
Messenger Crossfit, 270 State St., is not like traditional gyms. The open space includes ropes for climbing and chin-up bars and a pair of inverse bicycles. During the cross-fit session, clients are put through their paces, doing chin-ups, push ups, jumps and lifting weights using free weights and kettle bells.
Owners Gracey E. and Nathan A. Wike have always dreamed of owning a gym. When Mr. Wike, an Army captain, was transferred to Fort Drum, the couple decided to bring the message of elite fitness to the north country, hence the name Messenger Crossfit.
“When we moved to Carthage two and a half years ago we were disappointed because there was no CrossFit gym. Because we love CrossFit so much we thought that instead of being sad about not having a box to train at, we would build one,” Mrs. Wike said, noting a box is another name for a CrossFit gym. [Read more...]
Customers who walk through the Salmon Run Mall entrance by Regal Cinemas now are greeted by the metallic glint of 310-gallon fermentation tanks perched atop a 14-foot mezzanine at Skewed Brewing Co.
Co-owners Ryan and Cheryl Chaif, who opened the business with Mark P. Crandall, have hired about 50 part- and full-time employees.
The brew pub and eatery, which opened Tuesday next to the theater, will host a grand opening featuring live jazz music Oct. 18, 19 and 20. Those who wear hats or T-shirts purchased from Skewed Brewing or the Hops Spot, which the Chaifs also own in Sackets Harbor, during that weekend will receive drink specials.
Inspired by pubs from the Prohibition era, the five-barrel brewhouse, 46-foot stainless steel bar, cement floor and logo featuring skewed lines are intended to provide a distinctive restaurant experience, Mr. Chaif said. Its unusual name was inspired by a mathematical term in geometry referring to two nonparallel lines that don’t intersect.
Diners see more signs of the owners’ creativity when they sit down at the 12-foot-tall bar, where 48 craft beers are available on tap. Draft wines and specialty sodas soon will be debuted, Mr. Chaif said. Another feature installed along shelves behind the bar will be a rolling ladder system that moves along a track mounted to the wall, giving servers easy access to a collection of wine and spirits bottles.
“Most wine comes in a bottle and goes bad after you open it, but our wine will always be served fresh from kegs,” Mr. Chaif said Wednesday. “Our craft beer lineup has a couple of beers from each category, so you’ll find something whether you’re new or old” to the hobby.
The brewhouse will make beer using recipes crafted by the co-owners starting in 2014, Mr. Chaif said, when it plans to unveil its own line of homemade brews.
The 2,250-square-foot eatery, which seats about 100 diners, has a menu with an eclectic range of brick-oven pizzas, sandwiches and appetizers including salads, soups, chicken wings and baked pretzels. Its culinary team has expertise cooking duck, Mrs. Chaif said, which is featured with pizza, salads and sandwiches. She said one of the menu’s unique sandwiches, named “Hoi Ahn,” is made with pulled pork and flavored with cilantro and lime juice.
The recipe was inspired by a sandwich the Chaifs sampled during a trip to Italy.
The eatery’s location next to the theatre has been a bonus for couples with children who want to dine out, Mrs. Chaif said.
“We had two couples yesterday that came in and dropped their kids off at the theater to eat here,” she said. “There are a lot of corporate restaurants and family-style places in Watertown. But there aren’t many local restaurants that have a different style like us.”