New owners of McFaddens, renovate, reopen, rename it Riverview Bar and Grill

Last modified: Saturday, July 20, 2013

WILLIAMSBURG — Born and raised in Haydenville, David Lacourse met his wife Lori at a bar called The Last Chance on Route 9 before that establishment was renamed McFaddens.

Now 19 years later they are returning with their sons, Dylan, 13, and David, 15, to open a family restaurant of their own in the same place. They have renamed it Riverview Bar and Grill, bringing back a name the establishment had in the 1960s.

“Bringing back the old name has brought out some of the old customers that used to come here years ago,” David Lacourse said. “It is sort of a local boy comes home to Haydenville story.”

Lacourse said he grew up in Williamsburg, where his parents, Raymond and June Elliott, owned and operated the R & J Café on Route 9. According to Lori Lacourse, the Kopka family, now living in Florida, coined the name Riverview Bar and Grill.

When they heard the Lacourses were dusting off the old name, they sent an arrangement of flowers to wish them luck.

The Lacourses, who live in Easthampton, have been working to convert the business from the former bar scene of McFaddens, and encourage casual family dining.

“We really are stressing the restaurant and the food,” Lori Lacourse said.

As the owners of the Double D’s restaurant in Hatfield and the proprietors of the food truck for Elliott Brothers sausage grinders at local fairs, the Lacourse family knows the food business.

At the Riverview Bar and Grill, David is the head chef, Lori works as bartender, cook and bookkeeper, son David is also a cook and Dylan will soon be waiting tables at the restaurant.

The couple have completely overhauled the restaurant, replacing the Irish pub theme for a light-filled casual dining room, a new bar top with stone work behind the bar, a revamped kitchen with all new appliances and new floors and a fresh coat of paint throughout the building.

“We will be open for lunch and dinner at first and we may consider serving breakfast at some point,” Lori Lacourse said.

The new menu includes burgers, hand-cut fries, pizza, steak and prime rib, soup, sandwiches, chili, chicken wings, and a signature dish “volcano cheese fries.” The Lacourses have hired seven new employees.

“We only use fresh ingredients here — nothing frozen or canned and everything is homemade,” Lori Lacourse said. “Wednesday night is half price for pizza, Thursday night is our steak and bake, and Friday and Saturday nights we feature prime rib.”

The property is owned by the Lashway family, and the Lacourses are renting the building. The Lacourses decided to take over the business after former McFaddens’ owner Dennis Discawicz failed to renew his license to operate a restaurant.

The Board of Health issued a cease-and-desist order when it learned Discawicz was offering food without a license, said Erin Kirchner, health agent for the Foothills Health District, which serves Goshen, Williamsburg and Whately.

The Riverview Bar and Grill officially opened its doors on Wednesday to a crowd of 110 people.

“We are very excited about the restaurant and I think it is going to go very well,” David Lacourse said.


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