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The Bar & Grill Story - A Four Generation Family Tradition
Way back in 1935, the Allendale Bar & Grill had its humble beginnings as a neighborhood tavern located in the old Allendale Hotel. Owned by Mike and Maude "Mom" Connelly, the establishment even then was known for its good food and generous portions at bargain prices. Mom, who took care of the kitchen, was known countrywide for her generosity to those down and out. Hoboes and vagrants dropping off the freight trains that rumbled through town were assured of a meal before passing on. She also established the tradition of inviting residents in for a free corned beef and cabbage dinner every St. Patrick's Day - much appreciated by residents in those Depression years. It's said that in her day there wasn't a fire in Allendale that Mom didn't attend to provide hot food and drink to the town's volunteer firefighters. Yankee immortal Babe Ruth was a frequent visitor.
In 1948, the AB&G relocated to its present site on West Allendale Avenue. Mom and her five daughters lived in the house next to the tavern. Gradually, she turned over more and more of the operation to her eldest daughter Marge and her husband Walt Kunisch, who ran the bar operations at night while working as a printer during the day. Pizza to eat in and "to go" was added to the basic menu. In fact, present owner and third generation member Mike Kunisch learned the restaurant trade literally at his father's knee by folding pizza boxes when he was just five years old. In 1975 Mike Kunisch and his wife Bobbie assumed full ownership and control of the AB&G. Anticipating the trend toward moderate drinking and more wholesome food, they initiated a major renovation and expansion program that transformed the AB&G into the cheery, country-style restaurant it is today.
In 1992, the Kunisches acquired the Mahwah Bar & Grill and celebrated the arrival of the fourth generation, sons Chris, Craig, Ken, and daughter Katie, to help run the business. This building was rich in history as well. Formerly a general store and gin mill, it was a gathering place for the nearby workers of the Acme Brake Shoe Factory and Mahwah Ford Plant. It was home to one of the first televisions in town, and neighborhood kids used to gather out front to peer into the windows in hopes of seeing the likes of Mickey Mantle on TV. Like the AB&G before it, this local pub made the transition to family eatery. The original tin ceilings as well as one of the oldest bar structures in the state are still in place. A beautiful sixty seat outdoor patio is a favorite gathering place.
Most recently, the Kunisches decided to open an operation in a town dear to their hearts - Manchester, Vermont. In 2005, having been homeowners in town for more than twenty years, they purchased the historic property on Depot Street now home to the Manchester Bar & Grill. The former barn that became the Track Fore restaurant was lost to a fire in the 1980's. It is said that many locals, while upset by the terrible fire, did find comfort in the fact that those walls would definitely never talk. The renovated building seemed perfect for the Kunisch specialty - the transition of a historic local pub into a family-friendly bar and grill. Youngest son Ken jumped on the opportunity to relocate to the state where he spent his college years, and the Bar & Grill formula made its way to the Green Mountain State. Their prediction: continued success at all the locations so long as they never lose track of Ma Connelly's goal some seventy years ago of providing good food and plenty of it and generous drinks at reasonable prices to her customers!
Special Dietary Needs
Because all of our entrees are prepared to order, we would be happy to make alterations to meet any dietary needs. Simply inform your server of your request. We appreciate your patience on special preparations.