One of Cazenovia’s favored watering holes is drying up. Albert’s Restaurant has been sold and is slated to close at the end of February. Current owner John Marion has found buyers, signed the papers and plans to vacate the building by March 1. A fixture on Cazenovia’s main strip for 65 years, Albert’s will be sorely missed by residents of all ages looking for grub and grog.
Sunday Feb. 6 is anticipated to be the restaurant’s last day of operation. The annual Superbowl party will be held as usual, and will double as a farewell celebration. At the end of the day Albert’s kitchen will close permanently. While food will no longer be available, Marion plans to keep the bar open for the following few weeks.
Marion expressed mixed feelings about selling the restaurant. Excited to begin a new chapter in his life, he is also sad to leave behind the people he came to know in the 51 years he owned Albert’s.
“I’ve loved every minute I’ve been here. I really enjoyed it. I enjoyed the people more than anything They’ve all been great. There are a number of customers who have been very faithful to Albert’s and I’m going to miss seeing them,” Marion said, “I met a lot of great people and I had a lot of fun.”
Located at 52 Albany St., the structure that would become the home of Albert’s Restaurant was built in 1827. Previously a hardware store, it became a restaurant and bar in 1946, when Albert Riedl bought the building. The business changed a number of hands before ending up in Bob Gregg and Marion’s possession in 1959. The business partners purchased the adjoining space at 54 Albany St. in 1964 and remodeled the space into a dining room. The building used to have a third floor, which was destroyed by a fire in 1970.
The new owners of 52 Albany St. are Patty and Mark Burritt. Marion tells that the couple has extensive plans to improve the building, renovating the space into a dance studio, and reconstructing a third floor.
Many of Albert’s staff already found positions at other restaurants. Some of the cooks and bartenders are working at other Cazenovia businesses.
Towards the end of February, as Marion packs up, he plans on auctioning off everything within the business. Everything from the barstools to the dartboard will be available for purchase to those looking to own a piece of the Cazenovia institution.
Those who want one more taste of Albert’s cuisine had better hurry: The menu will only be available for two more weeks.