I'm lifting today's blog post right off of Victoria Station's new web site. I'm doing so because I didn't know all of the back story (for instance, Johnny Cash) for this landmark restaurant. It is the oldest restaurant on Pickering Wharf, and as Salem's restaurant scene booms, Victoria Station remains a cornerstone of the city's myriad dining options.
And, I must add, they serve beets in the salad bar. Like having a fresh salad bar isn't great enough!
So, here it is, the Story of Victoria Station:
As many of you that have visited Victoria Station in the last 30 years know, its story is a long winding one.
It was 1970 when three graduates from Cornell Hotel School created an exciting new theme restaurant Victoria Station. They were inspired by the world famous Victoria Station. The style was historic and nostalgic utilizing a bright red phone booth, English taxi cabs, historic train memorabilia and authentic train cars turned into dining cars creating a nostalgic, warm and fun atmosphere.
The first Victoria Station was opened in San Francisco to great accolades and success. The chain quickly became one of the fastest growing corporations in America. By the 1980's the company had grown to over 100 restaurants across the globe with thousands of employees and famous singer Johnny Cash as their spokesperson. (It was his inspiration for his song Destination Victoria Station). Victoria Station also has its own autobiography written by historian Tom Blake called Prime Rib and Boxcars. Once Victoria Station came to New England, Victoria Station on Pickering Wharf began to create its own architectural style utilizing the train station inspiration of the original restaurant and the famous train station with touches of the historic Pickering Wharf in Salem, MA. where it is located. Victoria Station Salem created its own specific style while honoring the traditions and standards that became synonymous with the chain.
Trains Keep a Rollin'
Victoria Station Salem is now the last remaining one in the United States. It is proud to continue the Victoria Station name and restaurant management continues to pay close attention to the historic and nostalgic atmosphere with a new approach and even higher standards than today's customers demand. They specialize in classic New England cuisine with a fusion of the once great Steakhouse and still offer Victoria Station's signature slow roasted Angus Prime Rib and "All you can eat" Salad Bar. Today they are proud to use as many fresh local ingredients as possible and receive their seafood direct from local vendors on a daily basis.
Last year Vic's Boathouse opened, serving an even greater number of patrons with a brand new full service Oceanside bar and lounge, serving delectable cuisine and featuring live free local entertainment every weekend. This year the Boathouse has been improved with a fantastic selection local brews, spirits and an ever changing extensive wine and cocktail selection.
A combination of a passion to serve and satisfy along with storied traditions make Victoria Station and Vic's Boathouse a staple in the Salem culinary scene, making it a premier destination for friends and family to make life long memories.