WellesleyWeston Magazine

FALL 2012

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/78488

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Page 183 of 211

local cuisine "making connections with one another" resolved over a cup of coffee," especially during the years he served as selectman from 1982-93. "People would come in and we'd talk things over." Residents may have held different points of view on an issue, but there was the general sense at the Cottage that everyone had the best interest of the town at heart. All day long, says Murray, customers would be making connec- tions with one another, from hiring a babysit- ter for New Year's Eve to convincing a venture A good many of those kids grew up believing there was an alligator in the restaurant's basement. The brave would dare to stand at the top of the stairs as Murray descended into the darkness below. He'd let out a shout and they'd squeal and rush back to the safety of their families – never more than just a few steps away in the cozy setting that hosts seven booths on one side and ten stools lining the counter on the other. "It was a fun place to own, a fun place to work," Murray says. The diner was open then from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm. But with an hour needed on each end to prep and close, the Murrays routinely put in fourteen-hour days, six days a week. "We never opened Sundays," Murray says, "life is too short. " Murray admits he didn't start out as much of chef, "but I learned to be." As he remembers it, Monday was meatloaf day and Wednesday was roast beef. Boiled ham dinner was a staple and all the soups were homemade. "It was that kind of place. We developed quite a rapport with our customers." And for many, that rapport meant being on the receiv- ing end of a practical joke on occasion and putting up with a good-natured amount of ribbing. "Everybody was treated the same; it didn't matter who you were. " It was not uncommon, Murray recalls, seeing the presi- dent of Raytheon sitting on the stool next to a trash col- lector and talking town politics. "A lot of issues got 182 capitalist to invest millions to launch a new business. Former Harvard Business School professor Walter Kuemmerle was so taken with the ambiance of the place that he chose it as the setting for his 2001 case study "Term Sheet Negotiations for Trendsetters, Inc." that is read by business students around the world. The case involves two entrepreneurs wrestling with a major business decision: As the two sat across from each other for lunch at one of the tables of their "corporate dining room" (a local Weston restaurant called Ye Olde Cottage), they knew they should get a grasp of the relative merits of each proposal before they were finished with the day. WellesleyWeston Magazine | fall 2012 PHO TOS BY BRIAN SMITH

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