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Plans Scrapped for Upscale Restaurant at Historic Vasiloff House

If new owner isn't willing to restore the 1929 property on the corner of Linwood and Paramus avenues, demolition is likely.

The chef of New Jersey's most romantic restaurant hoped to construct a large restaurant on a historic property in Ridgewood, Patch reported in July.

But unable to obtain one of Ridgewood's prized liquor licenses – plus facing what would undoubtedly be a lengthy process – multiple sources said Cafe Matisse's Peter Loria decided to halt any development plans at 833 Linwood Avenue, known as the "Vasiloff" house.

Tarvin Real Estate agent Melinda Cronk, the listing agent, confirmed Tuesday that Loria is no longer eyeing the property.

The Rutherford-based chef in fact moved on to Montclair to open a second restaurant. But the township's planning board panned his conceptual design, Baristanet reported.

With a liquor license so elusive in Ridgewood, Cronk doesn't expect Loria to stake out property in the village again.

Still, the "Vasiloff" house remains one of the villlage's most unique properties. The Saddle River runs directly to the west of the property border and the lower portion of the land lies in the flood plain; there are also tennis courts in the rear of the 2.46 acre property.

Although it needs significant TLC, Cronk is hopeful the next owner won't demolish the Tudor-style structure, built in 1929.

"The hope is that, if a residential buyer can’t be found, then possibly a business with the means to take on the restoration" will do so, Cronk said.

Across the street, in Paramus, another historic home is being demolished to create a parking lot for the Alpine Learning Center.

The realtor said there has been interest in the property, which is listed for $990,000.

anonymous January 31, 2013 at 02:21 PM
As Ridgewood has a population of about 25,000, we can have 8 consumption licenses. I think there are only 4 in use right now, Blend, MacMurphy's, Smith Brothers and Park West. Are there 4 that are being sat on? As for distribution licenses, according to state law we can only have 3, which we have greatly surpassed with Super Cellers, Wine Sellers, Cervino's, Cordially's and Harding's. Were some of those grandfathered in?
Mike Deutsch January 31, 2013 at 02:37 PM
Hey, Ridgewood Council! Buy it with Green Acres Money! Going north on Paramus Road there are only two properties between the Vasilov house and that abandoned house. Buy all four properties, it's mostly flood plain anyway.
I live here too January 31, 2013 at 03:52 PM
What about a time limit for how long one can SIT on a liquor license. This would force the sleeping licenses back into use.
jp1 January 31, 2013 at 03:56 PM
Everyone seems to complain about the lack of a bar in a restaurant, but you can bring your own and there are many good establishments without a liquor license.
Brian January 31, 2013 at 05:00 PM
It is not so much about wanting to go to a place with liquor, the bigger issue is the quality of restaurants. Restaurants without a bar have a limited profit margin. They charge more for entrees but this small amount does not make up the difference in profit if they were to have a liquor license. This limits the chefs/owners who are willing to invest in a town like Ridgewood. We have several good restaurants but few, if any, great restaurants.

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