Name of Business: Tatro’s Gourmet Soup & Sandwich
Owner: Tony Helias
Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m; Saturday, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m; Closed Sunday
St. Albans native Tony Helias took over Tatro’s on April 2, from Gary and Lisa Tatro. Growing up, Helias was the Tatros’ neighbor. “I was close with the family,” he said.
When Gary and Lisa decided to sell the business, Helias had been running his own catering business on the side while working first for Farrell Distributing and then McGillicuddy’s in Williston. Because he was catering from his home there were some items he wasn’t legally allowed to prepare. For those he went through Gary, Helias said.
His purchase of Tatro’s was a good fit, said Helias. “I love to cook.”
For a couple of months before the transfer, he worked with Gary and Lisa at Tatro’s. “They were awesome,” said Helias.
Because of the success of the restaurant, in particular its signature sandwich menu, Helias isn’t making many changes. “I’m throwing some twists on the specials and making different soups,” he said. Aside from that “everything’s the same,” including the staff.
“The staff’s awesome,” said Helias. “They know what they’re doing.”
Tatro’s, suggested Helias, is known for its “consistency, freshness and variety.”
Being a new owner of a restaurant means long hours. Helias is typically at the restaurant at 7 a.m. and stays until well after closing. The soups must be made fresh each morning and the sandwich ingredients sliced or, in the case of the meats, cooked.
“Nothing’s changing,” said Helias. “There’s just a new flame behind the cooking.