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Barre Bites 

Side Dishes: Toscano owners buy Sean and Nora's

MATTHEW THORSEN
  • Matthew Thorsen

Since Sean & Nora’s Restaurant in Barre closed its doors in June, locals have been eager to find out who’ll fill the space. It took some time, but the deal is done: Jon and Lucie Fath, owners of Toscano Café Bistro in Richmond, are buying the building. It’ll house their second, more casual eatery, called Lucia’s Italian Restaurant & Bar.

The spot is intended to be accessible and fun: “It’s gonna be ‘classic Italian comfort food,’” Jon dishes. “Meatballs, lasagna, baked ziti, manicotti, linguine with clam sauce.” In keeping with the relaxed vibe, the Faths plan to do lots of take-out business and put a TV in the bar. “We want regulars to be comfortable for happy hour,” Jon says. “You can have a beer and watch a game.

Will the acquisition mean any changes for Toscano, a more upscale Mediterranean-flavored spot? Not a bit, Jon promises: “It will remain exactly the same. That’s really important for people to know.”

Lucia’s doors will stay closed until Valentine’s Day so the Faths can renovate the 150-seat eatery to match their style. “We’re going for a warmer feel. It’s about making people feel welcome and comfortable from the moment they walk in,” Jon says.

Although Fath acknowledges that many diners are in tough financial straits, he won’t let that keep him from carrying out his plans. “A person only has so many years in their career,” he muses. “I’ve gotta keep plodding on; I can’t hide under a rock because the economy is slowing down . . . I think the concept is right for the location.”

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Suzanne Podhaizer

Suzanne Podhaizer

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Contributor Suzanne Podhaizer is an award-winning food writer (and the former Seven Days food editor) as well as a chef, farmer, and food-systems consultant. She has given talks at the Stone Barns Center for Agriculture's "Poultry School" and its flagship "Young Farmers' Conference." She can slaughter a goose,... more

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