Starting in May, Vermonters will no longer be able to "eat good food" - at least not at Eat Good Food Grill, Bar & Deli in Middlebury. Owner Tara Vaughan-Hughes says she'll be closing the hip restaurant on Sunday. She hopes to sell it as a turnkey operation. "It's all new equipment," she reports.
Six months ago, Vaughan-Hughes was operating two Eat Good Food restaurants. She sold the original one - in Vergennes - to focus on the Middlebury location, but the profits didn't roll in fast enough. "We're right at the beginning of what would be a good season, and that's heartbreaking," says Vaughan-Hughes. "We've run out of capital and run out of energy."
She believes that a high-end restaurant in Middlebury could work: "What I would do is start putting burgers on the menu, put a TV over the bar, make it accessible to everybody . . . it requires more re-jigging, and that always requires money," she explains.
Everything in the store's gourmet grocery section is on sale through the end of the week.
Looking for a business closer to B-town? The Old Brick Café on Rt. 2 in Williston is also up for grabs. Owner Dave Herskowitz is hoping to find either a buyer or an operating partner.
Why the shift? "My background is in construction and real estate and stuff," says Herskowitz. While he enjoyed renovating the building - for which he won a historic preservation award - the life of a restaurateur is not for him. "I'd just as soon turn it over to someone who's a little more passionate," he explains.
Herskowitz hopes whoever takes over will consider serving dinner - now the café offers breakfast, lunch and weekend brunch. Besides chain restaurants and a few ethnic joints, "There's absolutely nothing until you get to Richmond," he gripes. "That's the reason I was looking for a place to make into a café originally."
Until he finds a partner, lessee or buyer, the business will continue to operate as usual.