If you saw our sneak peak posted last week (click here if you didn’t) and guessed The Old Spaghetti Factory… you were right!
Guss Dussin founded The Old Spaghetti Factory in Portland, OR on Jan. 10, 1969. The story goes that it was a drizzly, chilly night and gross sales for opening night were a mere $171.80. People thought Dussin and his “hare-brained idea” was a complete loss. A week later, however, the evening’s sales tallied $900 and by the year’s end, The Old Spaghetti Factory had sales of almost $400,000. Two more locations were added in 1970 and that year, the sales rose to $1.3 million.
The rest is history and brings us to today. The Old Spaghetti Factory is, as the name gives way, an italian style restaurant with over 40 locations in the U.S. and several locations worldwide. Nashville’s location is located downtown on 2nd Ave. The Nashville location has been a landmark in Music City since the 80s, around just a decade shy as the very first location.
Dussin pioneered the concept of developing restaurant properties in areas of town that had a bad rap. These diamond-in-the-rough locations, so to speak, are often unique and full of character and history. To this day, most OSF restaurants are located in old warehouses or historic buildings with the thought that as the restaurant’s popularity grows, the area will begin to improve, encourage more businesses to move in and more foot traffic.
The restaurant’s inside decor does a good job complimenting its outer characteristics. The decor traditionally features antiques – chandeliers and brass headboards and footboards as bench backs – and busts of train engineers. Perhaps each restaurant’s most distinguished artifact is a streetcar that sits in the middle of it, offering seating inside!
The original OSF was decorated by Dussin’s wife, Sally. She worked endlessly to fill the space with garage sale finds and anything she could get her hands on that had a modest price tag. Today, Sally still oversees the decor that goes in to each and every location, however her budget has expanded somewhat – the restaurant spends up to $1 million on the decor for each restaurant but sticks true to utilizing antiques and pieces with history and a story to tell.