Sonny’s: Not sold – but family says they are ‘open’ to offers on property

Family Business: Richard Elia, left, and his son Matthew are shown outside Sonny’s in Adams Village Tuesday afternoon. 	Bill Forry photoFamily Business: Richard Elia, left, and his son Matthew are shown outside Sonny’s in Adams Village Tuesday afternoon. Bill Forry photo

The longtime operator of a landmark Adams Corner pub and restaurant says that rampant rumors that the business has been sold to a new buyer are untrue.

Richard ‘Richie’ Elia, 69, has worked at the business at 754 Adams St. since the 1960s— when it was owned and operated by his father, Alexander ‘Sonny’ Elia. The elder Elia died in July 2014 at age 88. The business is now owned by Matthew Elia, 41, the namesake’s grandson and the son of Richie Elia, who works nightly at the eatery, which does a heavy trade in food, beer and lottery, including a busy Keno business.

“It’s definitely not true that we have sold,” Richie Elia told the Reporter on Tuesday. “But the door is open to prospective buyers.”

Sonny’s has been a fixture in Adams Village since 1968 when Sonny bought the bar that was previously known as Amaru’s Café. Prior to that, Elia and his extended family ran a popular luncheonette in the South End called The Colonial.

“I just love the area and the neighborhood period,” Sonny Elia told the Reporter in ’99. “These people here were just great.”

This week, Richie Elia acknowledged that he and his family have had the business appraised and have been approached by several potential buyers in recent months. However, no deal has been reached.

“I would want $2 million for this place,” said Elia, who said his current plan is to continue to work alongside his son until age 75. “I could see a good future here for my son. It’s a comfortable, good business.”

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