There is damage control coming out of Yellow Springs Inn this evening. And I can tell you one thing I don’t know who wrote it but it definitely wasn’t his publicist. She knows the restaurant and hospitality business and this slightly defensive Magna Carta is not her style at all. (Here is PDF of Yellow Springs Update) And I do believe the photo used in the missive is one I took. (Glad to see they are getting use out of the photos!)
Anyway, as many of my faithful readers know I had posted almost a week ago that my sources told me that Yellow Springs Inn was closing. I also said at that time that I had yet to speak to Charlie Orlando of Yellow Springs Inn or his publicist.
Charlie Orlando, naturally, was upset when he found out about the post. He is a self-admitted computer and Internet Luddite, so someone must have told him to look at the post.
He and I texted back and forth over the weekend – I had been away and then had company. He said to me (and I quote) “There is some definite misinterpreting of the current situation and future plans.” He went on to say “I am a lot smarter than that and if that is what someone told you, they had better check their sources.”
So as a favor and special courtesy to Charlie and until I did more research, I made the post private. The post also referenced his new business venture. Basically, it wasn’t so hard to figure out. It’s a place up in Berk’s County called Cab Frye’s which is another restaurant that was having a tough time in the economy.
Here are two articles:
I went to Berks County Public Records to see if any of the deed transfer relating to the sale had been posted and something had posted :
Then I went to the searchable database Pennsylvania has and looked up 914 Gravel Pike LLC the new owner. This is what I found:
1657 Art School Road is the address of the Yellow Springs Inn at the Jenny Lind House, correct? So either the ghost of Jenny Lind is acquiring real property or someone at Yellow Springs Inn bought something bigger than a bread box, right?
I was just going to leave this all alone but in part I feel that the e-mail blast that someone sent out for Charlie Orlando is aimed at me and anyone else who has been speculating on the future of the Yellow Springs Inn (and for what it is worth that is a LOT of people). I realize that a lot of people in Chester County don’t really know me as a blogger, but I have been doing it for years. I also do my research. And in this case people NOT in the restaurant industry or anything remotely involved sent me stuff. And what I have seen is not pretty. I do not see this business as being sustainable. I am not trying to be mean, that is my opinion. And legally, I am entitled to that.
And this missive sent out earlier this evening also doesn’t make sense. I have friends who own and have owned restaurants, bars, clubs, and so on. I have never heard of someone buying a liquor license in one county and using it in two counties have you?
So how can you on a “limited” basis use the liquor license in both Chester County and Berks County? I was told one license per address once upon a time, is that not true? Has something changed?
As for the “re-branding” I do not pretend to be a marketing maven, but I wish them the best. Common sense dictates that operating two places at least 40 minutes apart will be difficult, right? Has Charlie Orlando cloned his talented Chef-Wife Barbara or himself?
As far as the liquor license goes I know a lot of people (myself included) wrote letters of support to West Pikeland on behalf of the Orlandos and Yellow Springs Inn so they could have a liquor license again (they had one at the first Inn location up the street but was that license with the building he rented perhaps? I never really knew, or cared truthfully.) So I am not as facile at noodling around on the PA LCB website as some other websites, but this is what I found on the liquor license referred to in today’s e-mail blast:
Then I did a second search on the PA LCB website – this time strictly for West Pikeland Township, Chester County:
Wow that ghost of Jenny Lind is busy. I found another license pending transfer. To a Gorick Enterprises. So I went back to the PA Corporations Database and searched again:
There is that Rick Orlando name again. I am guessing that is a relative of Charlie Orlando’s? A brother maybe? Why not just say so? I would be thrilled to be in business with my sister and many people go into business with siblings, right?
So anyway, obviously change is afoot at Yellow Springs Inn. What was sent out today only makes people more curious.
Will both places survive? I am sure by sometime in the fall we will know definitively. I just wish the swirl of confusion would settle down.
What needs to happen is for some restaurant honesty – restaurants open and close, change and evolve – it is part of the cycle of business. It’s all how you handle the news. And disseminate it.
As my late grandmother who was Pennsylvania German used to say tell the truth and shame the devil.