The Mountain Times

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Sold for $55,000: The former Hemingway's Restaurant was sold at auction last Friday

KILLINGTON- Bidding for the former Hemingway's Restaurant on Route 4 in Killington started at 11 a.m. Friday, May 17. Five interested parties bid on the restaurant, which was once considered one of the area's top dining establishments with a four-star rating and a renowned wine selection.

1--sold -for -$55,000---by -Jason -Mikula ---P1090403

Thomas Hirchak Company, which conducted the auction Friday, described the property as a classy 1860 farmhouse with about 3,444 square feet of space on 4.5 acres, featuring a stone-walled wine cellar and a two-bedroom, one-bath owner's quarters or rental apartment.

But as a foreclosure sale, "we have no direct knowledge of the condition of the property," said Hirchak before starting the bidding.

Damage to the building from Tropical Storm Irene was evident. The estimated costs to rebuild and repair the building was ultimately too much for the former owners, Linda and Ted Fondulas, who had closed the restaurant prior to the flooding due to rising debts.

The Fondulals's owed two loans and interest totaling $295,746, prompting the restaurant's mortgage holder, People's United Bank, to seek a foreclosure judgment from Rutland civil court. That judgment was granted four months ago.

The former owners also owed back taxes totaling $33,813 to the town of Killington.

Hirchak, with his classic flair, tried to begin the bidding at $200,000. When no one responded he quickly dropped the price, getting as low as $40,000 until one of the bidders offered $25,000.

Representatives from People's United Bank said they would not be bidding. Not long into the process, two of the bidders also bowed out, leaving one person bidding by phone and one other present.

The bids climbed to $30,000, $32,500, $34,000 all the way up to $48,000. Then jumps slowed down, raising by $500 with longer hesitations.

1--sold -for -$55,000---by -Jason -Mikula --James -De Rosia -WINNER-P1090402

The price continued to climb reaching the final bid of $55,000. The man present at the auction, James DeRosia, out bid the phone bidder. He declined to speak to the press or share his plans for the building.

Ted and Linda Fondulas have left the restaurant business and now manage Newhall Farm in Redding.