It was 1969 when Kevin and Valerie Young opened their restaurant in a former Polish bakery at 3004 Niagara St., they decided to call it the Bakery Restaurant and Lounge.
The other day, the couple celebrated their golden anniversary as they prepared to celebrate their restaurant’s 45th anniversary, with a giant party, free food, drink and music, to be held at the restaurant on Saturday.
“That’s what you do when you have a business,” smiled Valerie as she prepared the restaurant for dinner service on Friday, the day she married her husband 50 years ago.
This is the life of a family who have worked together for a very long time to make the restaurant a continued success, attracting regulars and tourists alike with a menu of steaks, seafood and traditional dishes like fish fries and pasta. .
Almost 20 years ago Kevin appointed his son David the bakery manager and went to work in various other restaurant jobs including as restaurant manager at the Seneca Niagara hotel and casino where he ran the bakery. opening of many restaurants at the location, including Koi and Cascata.
Now he’s semi-retired, plays a lot of golf, but remains involved in the bakery, as do Valerie and Kevin Jr., who help with marketing.
For many years, the place was known for phones that allowed customers to call from table to table, apparently a good way to meet new friends.
“We had numbers on each table,” Kevin recalls. “They could also call the DJ and ask for songs.”
At one point there were 125 phones, including one on each table and one at each seat in the bar.
Gradually, the phones were phased out. Are the owners missing them? “They had achieved their goal,” Kevin said. “But, we still have people coming for them.”
“Now we’re just focusing on great food and great service,” he added, noting that his favorite dish was ribs. “We’re famous for a lot of our food, like our fish fries, but the ribs are falling off the bone, little baby back ribs. They are exceptional,” he said.
The head of the bakery is Glenn Fraccica, formerly of Buffalo Chop House and Orazio’s.
Those who want a taste of baking today can participate in a fundraiser for the Niagara Street Area Business and Professional Association. La Boulangerie joins Alps Catering in offering half a chicken or a rack of ribs for $ 13 to benefit the business association, including take-out meals today from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.