Al Mac's History
“JUSTLY FAMOUS SINCE 1910”
Following the more than 100-year-old tradition of serving the men and women working in the mills along the Taunton River and the many waterways surrounding the City of Fall River, Al Mac’s Diner continues under the new ownership and direction of Chef Robert W. Dunse II, Laura (Dunse) Reed and Susan A. Dunse.
Presented with a unique opportunity to fulfill a life-long dream of owning a restaurant in Fall River, the Dunse Family will follow the legacy of Robert and Laura’s paternal great-grandfather, Nicholas Pannoni, who was co-owner and cook at the Columbus Café on Bedford Street. Our family will again be part of Fall River’s history providing fresh, homemade foods to its residents and those in the surrounding areas.
In 1910, Al McDermott (Al Mac) started his business driving from mill to mill with his six-horse drawn wagon, providing food and drink to the children and adult workers that kept the mills humming around the clock. By 1917, the number of mills reached 49, keeping Al McDermott’s business thriving. Over the years, Fall River's population increased by tens of thousands while spindle capacity in these cotton mills moved from 500,000 to 1,000,000, earning our town the distinction as the leading textile city in America.
American Printing Company, employing 6,000 people, became the largest company printer of cloth in the world. Mills workers needed to eat and Al Mac’s business boomed. During the years that followed, many of the mills began moving their business to the southern states, but clothing manufacturers from New York took up much of the inexpensive vacant space with immigrant workers who were eager to manufacturer these products.
By 1940, there were just 17 companies in operation making Al McDermott shift the way he did business. During these years, Al began purchasing and opening up diners in the Northeast—so many that his family couldn't keep track of them all. Finally, in 1953 Al purchased his last diner, his name sake—a 1953 stainless steel silver and green DeRaffele diner which is now located in the Executive Plaza at 135 President Ave. in Fall River, MA. Its original location was directly across Davol Street where the Bicentennial Park is now located.
Over the years, Al Mac’s built its notoriety as an icon in the diner industry. With its infamous neon sign, one of the largest in the industry, Al Mac’s Diner summons its customers in the night sky as they cross the Braga and Veteran’s Memorial Bridges from the west or drive by on President Avenue, Davol Street, or Route 79.
Placed on the National Register of Historic Places on December 20, 1999, Al Mac’s Diner is as famous a landmark in the Fall River area as Lizzie Borden’s house and the U.S.S. Massachusetts. Our intention is to again make Al Mac’s Diner a destination for those traveling from near or far.
The name Al Mac’s Diner will remain as will the overall theme of a table diner serving freshly made comfort foods and desserts as well as more sophisticated dishes to appeal to a more discerning palate and attract a larger customer base. Focus will be placed on locally grown and freshly made when available which will reduce costs by removing the added mark-up for processing or storage.
Al Mac’s will continue to offer standard American fare and diner foods with specials oriented more towards fine dining. We will work to reconnect with past customers of the diner while developing an additional new clientele with our motto of “Four star food at a one star price." We make our food affordable to those who might be out priced at other area establishments.
Goal Scorer’s LLC, Susan A. Dunse, Robert W. Dunse II, and Laura (Dunse) Reed, brings together a vast array of experience in hospitality/restaurant, business and education, which when combined, will move Al Mac’s Diner to the level of notoriety it once knew. Putting our well-balanced skills to use in management, purchasing, personnel, marketing and kitchen management, we will all complement and offset each other in reopening Al Mac’s and creating a profitable business that will be the pride of Fall River once again.
ABOUT OUR OWNERS
Robert W. Dunse II, the Executive Chef, educated at Johnson & Wales University in Baking and Pastry and over 8 years of experience in the culinary world, including Lead Catering Chef of Gillette Stadium and former Personal Chef to Robert Kraft, the owner of the New England Patriots.
Susan A. Dunse, the Front of the House Manager and Business Manager, has over 35 years of combined experience in finance, small business ownership, real estate management and sales, small business start-ups, vocational and business education and working with at-risk students. She holds a B.S. in Business Administration, an M.S. in Business Education, completing an MS in Counseling and holds various levels of licensure in education in vocational education and administration.
Laura A. (Dunse) Reed, the Night Manager and Head Waitress, has over 11 years of experience in the Front of the House, including T.K O’Malley’s, McCormick & Schmick, Zooma, and H2O. She holds a BS in Education specializing in mild to moderate disorders and is a lead teacher at Bradley Hospital teaching students with Asperger's.
Mindful of the economy and socioeconomic background of Fall River and the surrounding area, we intend to provide food options that allow all to patronize our establishment. We will be following the standards set by Chef Robert W. Dunse II of “four star food at a one star price”. We believe that price point should not dictate whether customers are served fresh, local, handmade items. Chef Robert’s goal is to show that the items on the Al Mac’s menu will be equal to that of the restaurants in Providence and New Bedford, and still be in keeping with the price point of Fall River. Keeping the dinner menu small, focus will be given to the quality of each dish allowing for variety on a daily basis.
With the purchase of a point of sales computer system, we'll be able to accurately diagnose daily sales, food costs and wages and make immediate adjustments to better serve our customers and staff. All transactions will be recorded allowing us to analyze trends, peak sales times and profitability of items and hours. Serving versatile menu items that are made to order in small batches, our turnover quickly allows costs to stay low. Supporting local vendors allows us to have the variety we need at hand and not have to order in bulk. Our customers will see this translated in the cost of their food and the freshness on their plate.
Hours of Operation:
Monday: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Tuesday: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Wednesday: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Thursday: 7 a.m.-2 p.m.
Friday: 7 a.m.-4 a.m.
Saturday: 7 a.m.-4 a.m.
Sunday: 7 a.m.-3 p.m.