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Old Goober's location to soon serve 'comfort' food

7/12/12 | By Nathan Brunet, Staff Writer

BERLIN — The restaurant formerly known as Goober’s on Pitts Street in Berlin will soon be transformed into a family-style English pub specializing in comfort food — a dining option owner Cody Bates believes is missing in the downtown area.

“The thing about Berlin is that every [business] is a little bit different,” said Bates. He hopes his new restaurant, the BurleyInn Tavern, will provide a niche for those looking for traditional food at an affordable price.

BurleyInn will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and offer options such as chicken and dumplings and mashed potatoes with gravy. Head Chef Anthony Grasso said the menu will feature high-quality foods, but at reasonable prices.

“Doing everything from scratch right away doesn’t mean it needs to be priced like fine dining,” he said.

A beer, wine and liquor license has been obtained for the restaurant, which will also provide entertainment soon after opening.

Bates, who has lived in the Berlin area for most of his life, worked in many different local restaurants before deciding to own his own.

“When I found out about the opportunity [to open a restaurant], I wanted to be my own boss and create something for myself,” he said.

Late last year, Bates received approval to lease the Berlin property on the same day he discovered he was expecting his first child. Since then, the diligent Bates has been organizing every detail of both new ventures. He received a builder’s permit last week and said construction should begin soon.

“There’s nothing really stopping us at this point,” said Bates.

The BurleyInn Tavern, which is not to be confused with the unrelated beer crafters at Burley Oak Brewing Company, will bring a historic namesake back to Berlin.

According to information from the Calvin B. Taylor House Museum on North Main Street, the principal part of the town was built on a tract of land called Burley. Because Burley had an inn and was a popular crossroads for travelers, it became known as Burley Inn. The name was later shortened to Berlin.

Bates has not yet set a date for the restaurant to open, but said is hoping to serve Berlin by the middle of August. After that, Bates hopes the building’s windows will never be boarded up again.

“If everything goes well, I’d love to be around 365 days a year,” he said.

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