by Susan E. Campbell
Scallions restaurant at 44 Lake Ave. in Saratoga Springs has changed hands.
The new owners, Liz and Eric Swoyer, took over the establishment, now in its 35th year, in November.
“Previous owner Michele Morris worked for the original owners and they found her. She followed in their footsteps by finding us,” said Eric Swoyer.
Liz was a server at Scallions for more than five years. Eric, her husband, is the chef. He previously worked at WOW Restaurants Inc. in Saratoga. Liz runs the front of the house
“Michele had quite a few interested in buying the business,” said Liz. “But she was not looking to take the first offer or hold out for the highest bidder. She wanted the right persons to continue the Scallions legacy.”
The couple had talked about having their own restaurant one day. But they did not foresee purchasing one with decades of brand equity and a loyal customer base.
“We feel very lucky,” Liz said. “When we were approached we went all in on it.”
“Scallions was both a great circumstance and a great fit for what we believe in, which is fresh ingredients and healthy, local food that makes you feel good,” Eric said.
The Swoyers were pleased that they would not have to start from the ground up to fulfill their dream, they said.
“It’s a lot of work finding the right people and the restaurant already had a wonderful staff,” said Liz.
Scallions has long used fresh ingredients for its diverse menu items, Eric said, but he will put his personal touch on the restaurant going forward by “having fun with fresh ingredients. I love to cook all sorts of foods and I am well versed in different areas, by region or type of food. I like to take one style, like Asian, and infuse it with another style, like Mediterranean, and marry them together.”
Eric said he enjoys cooking seafood “because it is delicate and challenging, and the challenge drives me.” He has sourced some products on the menu from different places than previously. For example, he is getting Faroe Island salmon from off the coast of Denmark rather than North America.
“The salmon there is not over-fished and is sustainable,” which is a priority, said Eric. “We want to continue to execute at a high level and have a very high standard for quality.”
The owners have taken a small room in Scallions that over the years was used for a variety of purposes and designed it for private parties.
“We entered Scallions in Chowderfest for the first time this winter and served a thousand cups,” she said. “Ours didn’t win an award but people got to know more about where we are and what we do.”
Visit www.scallionsrestaurant.com for more information.
by Susan E. Campbell