On Sept. 17, 1966, Attilio Zich and his family—and that means his whole family—moved from Boston to Northborough to open up a new diner in town.
Forty four years later, and still stands at 253 West Main Street.
Carol Misulis, Zich's daughter, now owns the diner, where Northborough Patch recently stopped to have lunch. A lively center of town chat, the large restaurant has a long, noodling counter that bubbles out in three sections, allowing lots of stool seating. In honor of Veterans "month," manager Maureen Maloney, who has worked for Tilz since the day it opened, kept patriotic tunes continuous on the radio.
Maloney does most of the cooking and says, "after 44 years, I can't really pick my favorite thing to cook. It's whatever I'm in the mood for. We're a little laid back here."
Specials that day included chicken croquets, and soup, which regular Duncan Judson got, with a grilled cheese. Judson eats at Tilz every day.
"He got kicked out of every other restaurant," cracked another diner.
Judson laughs, adding, "The food is almost as good as the people."
Maloney has lived in Northborough since 1966, and has her own theory as to how Tilz has survived through various business neighbors, and an influx of chain restaurants in the past ten or so years.
"The service here is better than most have," said Maloney. "You can come in and eat and you don't spend your whole paycheck, either. The bigger places are getting hurt. Everybody has felt the effects, but we haven't had to lay anybody off and we're thankful. We see a lot of people unemployed. We have been through this before. It's America."