The Lincoln Restaurant and Aldimar Restaurant Nearly 30 years on Public Square in the Lincoln Building
Nicholas Zaferis opened the Lincoln Restaurant, later the Aldimar Restaurant, in April of 1957 at the Lincoln Building on Public Square. It was an era where the city of Watertown had many well-known restaurants, including Morgia’s; the New Parrot Restaurant, the S & B, Victory Club, Eleanor and Red Moon Diners, LeRay Restaurant, and Howard’s, among many others.
Zaferis had purchased the Arlington Luncheonette in the early part of the decade from Patsy DeVito and also opened up the Unity Coffee Shop in the former location of Loretta Robinson card and gift shop at the Unity Building. In 1959, he opened the Empire Restaurant at the site of the former Tavern Restaurant on Public Square. With his plate full, it’s no wonder the ownership of the Lincoln Restaurant changed sometime within three years of opening, as by 1960 it would be owned by Edward W. Church.
Mr. and Mrs. Church’s involvement would last all of two years, if that, as on Dec. 7, 1962, the Daily Times reported–
Equipment and stock from the Lincoln Restaurant, 93 Public Square, was sold for a total of $592 at the public auction conducted by the treasury department, Internal Revenue Service, this morning.
The property had been seized from Mr. and Mrs. Edward W. Church, 168 Sterling Street, proprietors, for non-payment of federal taxes.
George D. Hill operated the Lincoln Restaurant at some point, most likely after the Church’s, as his obituary in 1966 mentioned him being the proprietor for a couple of years. In 1964, the Lincoln Restaurant came under the ownership of Sharon and Ed Whitmore and was managed by Mary Rizzo, at least early on, and the name would be changed to the Aldimar Restaurant.
In 1967, the Whitmores, who also owned the Red Moon Diner on Court Street for a number of years, would put the Aldimar up for sale. When it didn’t sell, they obtained a liquor license and continued to operate it. At about this time, they also added dancing and live music to the venue Thursday thru Sunday nights with the likes of Dusty and the Sunset Trailmen, Fred Angel’s North Country Ramblers and Danny Bigelow and the Country Strangers amongst many others.
The Whitmores would finally sell the Aldimar around 1970 when they had reduced the original asking price of $13,500 to $9,500. Nothing was found in the Watertown Daily Times regarding who owned it immediately afterward, but in 1971 it was under the new management with hostesses Margaret, Mary Kay with Allen Bisig added to some of the print advertisements in 1972.
In 1974, the restaurant fell under new management once again, presumably Mary E. Devencenzi who operated it until her death after a brief illness in 1975. Ownership after this time became less-noted in the press, with the exception of Allen Piche around 1980. Piche would own and operate the Eleanor Restaurant in the late 1980s before it closed and was demolished in 1991.
The Aldimar Restaurant would apparently close for good in either 1984 or 1985; no announcement was ever made in the local newspaper, other than to report that, in February of 1986, Minuteman Press had moved into its former location at the Lincoln Building.