Grand Gorge Pizza Palace to re-open under new owner
By Joe Moskowitz
It was not a particularly good winter for Grand Gorge, but there are signs that things are improving.
About a month after owner Nick Malaxos closed the door on the Pizza Palace, Will Quackenbush stepped in and, within the next two weeks, hopes to reopen the pizza business.
Will is often referred to as “Hot Dog Will” because he sold hot dogs from a stand across Route 23 from the Pizza Palace.
As soon as Quackenbush and Malaxos came to an agreement, Quackenbush went to work renovating the restaurant. There is new paint, new stainless steel in the kitchen, and a totally new appearance. But he is hoping to attract the same old crowd. That is one of the reasons why he decided to take over the Palace.
Will says Grand Gorge needs a place to buy pizza. The Pizza Palace had been in operation for 22 years, but this last year was a tough one for the hamlet. Fire took two anchor businesses, Becker’s Tires and Sundae’s Restaurant, then the Palace closed. But things are looking much better these days. Sundae’s is being rebuilt. Catskill Mountain BBQ has opened its doors, and shortly there will be an all new, and Quackenbush hopes, improved Pizza Palace.
Will said he was hoping to continue another Grand Gorge tradition, his hot-dog stand, but now that isn’t going to happen. “It’s time to step up my game and get into the full-scale restaurant business,” he added.
Pending approval by the New York State Department of Health, Will hopes to be open by the second weekend in April.