By Kristina Rex

BOSTON (CBS) – Durgin-Park, a Faneuil Hall staple since 1827, will be closing on January 12.

Employees of the historic restaurant were notified about the decision to close Wednesday.

Durgin-Park is one of the oldest restaurants in the country. It gained a reputation for its good-hearted waitresses being nearly as “fresh” as its fish.

For more than 30 years, Richelle Mazzone’s been behind the bar.

“I came in looking for a job. They said put on a uniform and get to work. I was like what?” Mazzone said remembering her first day. “They said some people called out sick, you want a job you’re working today.”

Bartender Richelle Mazzone at Durgin-Park (WBZ-TV)

That’s why she says it hit like a bombshell when employees were told the landmark would be shutting down.

“Where are you gonna get Indian pudding with ice cream? You gotta get it here! Or prime rib? Or pot roast?” she said.

Parent company Ark Restaurants based out of New York says it’s the nature of the business – and that the restaurant just isn’t making money like it used to.

Known for serving supper with a side of sass – customers came from all over the world for the atmosphere you can’t find anywhere else in Boston.

Durgin Park in Boston (WBZ-TV)

Olivia Roy and her now fiance came all the way from Quebec City just to tell their favorite bartender their good news.

“Every time we came to Boston we came back here, and she’d always ask my boyfriend when’s he going to propose, when’s he going to propose? So today we came just to tell her that he did!” Roy said.

Mazzone says it’s the people that made her keep the apron on and the drinks flowing for more than 30 years.

“My poor customers! I just want to say goodbye guys. I love you all,” Mazzone said.

Durgin Park has been in Boston since 1827. (Photo credit: Ark Restaurants)

The CEO of Ark Restaurants told WBZ-TV he’s talking with landlords and interested parties in the hopes they can pull off a miracle instead of closing, but for now, they plan to close the doors on January 12.

Kristina Rex

Comments (8)
  1. Alan Zeichick says:

    I am seriously in anguished shock over this. Durgin Park is my favorite Boston restaurant — I go there every time I’m in town.

    My parents used to take me here as a kid, and I’ve treated many of my friends and family to Durgin Park over the years.

    So many happy memories.

  2. Laurie Croteau Couture says:

    Another sign of the times. Corporate America decides their profits and paychecks aren’t big enough, so time to move on. I hope, for the sake of the employees, some wealthy restauranteur will come along and keep it going as the Boston landmark it is (hello – Wahlberg brothers, this is right up your alley)!

    1. Yep, wouldn’t want that CEO to miss his huge bonus because corporate profits are only 30% instead of 31.

  3. Kevin Pomeroy says:

    So Sad! I have been going on a regular basis as a kid with my parents and as an adult for over 50 years. My father also ate there on a regular basis when he grow up on Boston…I bring folks from out of the are there all the time and they all love the place. Wish they could find a way to stay open…..

  4. Gil Heuss says:

    Ate there as a kid in the 50’s and as an adult many times since. The food was perfect, the deserts were magic, and the service was in a realm of it’s own.

  5. I’ve NEVER been there, but it sounds to me like SOMEBODY needs to find a way to keep this place open. There HAS to be a businessman or woman out there… sports figure, person with a dream, group of investors, someone who can make this happen.
    Truthfully this is the 1st time that I have heard about how great this place is, a hidden gem out in the public, but a well kept secret????
    C’mon somebody that has the means help these people out.

  6. Bill Sample says:

    I believe good LOCAL ownership would find a way to keep it open. I’ve been an occasional customer for over 50 years now and I was looking forward to my next visit. As Laurie said above “Hello – Wahlberg Brothers…”

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