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iBerkshires.com Columnist Section

Sue Bush
More articles from Sue Bush

Unique Dining At The Firehouse Cafe

By Susan Bush
12:00AM / Thursday, March 02, 2006

Firehouse Cafe operator/manager Christopher Solari
Adams - Firehouse Cafe operator/manager Christopher Solari is excited about patron response to the 47 Park Street restaurant.

"When people are leaving, they are satisfied with the amount of food they were served and they love the ambiance," Solari said during a March 2 interview at the eatery.

Solari became the operator/manager of the restaurant in mid-November, after entering into a one-year lease with restaurant founder Burton Kirk. Kirk and Dee Superneau operated the restaurant for several months before leasing the premises to Solari.

Unique Decor Adds Ambiance

The two-story restaurant boasts a clever, cozy interior that pays homage to the building's former life as a fire house and ambulance station. Muted brick walls and warm-toned wood floors complement a 100-year-old intricately patterned bar, panes of stained glass, and a second-floor tin ceiling.

Life-sized firefighter replicas stand erect on the first floor and the dining room walls and shelves are adorned with authentic firefighter gear and items such fire extinguishers and lanterns.


Firefighter statues are part of the cafe's decor.
Tables seat two or four and are smothered with vibrant red tablecloths, which set off the glossy black-lacquered chairs.

Paintings by artist Michael Mongue are displayed on the restaurant walls.

The restaurant seats up to 45 patrons, Solari said.

The full bar seats about 10 people, and is stocked with a variety of liquors, bottled beers, and beer "on tap."

Homemade Fare

The menu is filled with mostly homemade items. Solari said that the restaurant's french fries are hand-cut from potatoes by the kitchen staff. The soups and chowders are homemade as well, and the lasagna, sauerkraut and German potato salad are also homemade. Sauces are homemade as well, including the sauces that accompany chicken marsala and chicken piccata entrees. The restaurants's dessert cakes are homemade.

Two of the desserts have gained tremendous popularity, Solari said.

"Our cheesecake and our double-chocolate silk cake have developed a following," he said.

Solari spent some time working in Maine as a member of The Colony resort management team. He invited a few of the resort chefs to spend a few weeks at the cafe and share their expertise with cafe staff. All the cooking is now done by the local team, Solari said, and added that most restaurant patrons have been pleased with the food.

Menu Options

Appetizers include mozzarella sticks, potato skins, "firehouse wings," shrimp cocktail and bacon-wrapped scallops. A sandwich menu offers a "firehouse burger," a veggie burger,overstuffed ham, turkey, or roast beef sandwiches, and a "sizzling rueben" sandwich. Sandwiches are priced from $4.95 to $7.95 and come with french fries or potato chips.

An "American" menu includes grilled 12-ounce ribeye steaks, Black Diamond steaks, country spare ribs, grilled salmon, baked scrod, broiled scallops, and a surf and turf selection.

An "Italian" menu includes meat lasagna, shrimp scampi, chicken, veal, or eggplant parmesan, and pasta primavera. Wienerschnitzel, bratwurst with sauerkraut and knockwurst with sauerkraut round out a "German" menu.

Entree prices range from $8.95 to $16.95.

Tables are set with a casually elegant flair.


The Firehouse Cafe is open evenings Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday beginning at 4 p.m.. The cafe opens at 11;30 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and remains open for evening dinners. The restaurant closes at 8 p.m. on Sunday. Solari said that he plans to open for lunch during the week beginning in May, and is also planning to offer outdoor seating when the weather becomes warmer.

Reservations are recommended but not required. For additional information or to make reservations, call 413-743-9000.

Susan Bush may be reached via e-mail at suebush@iberkshires.com or at 802-823-9367.
Your Comments
Post Comment
We had a break between lectures and noticed the Firehouse Cafe turning the car around to go somewhere else. We LOVED what you did to the space. Our waitress was great and showed us the album of renovating. The food was very good, too! We'll be back!
from: Jess & Gayleon: 10-05 00:00:00-2007

i work there its a very nice place.
from: ndon: 08-29 00:00:00-2006


 
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