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Local News

October 26, 2013

Jimmy T's a spacious, diverse gathering spot

Downtown Oneonta has a variety of venues for eating, drinking and making merry. Jimmy T’s Cocktail Lounge, a secret gem on the downtown scene, offers something different.

The restaurant and lounge is a tremendous area consisting of several sectioned rooms and interactive spaces, Jimmy T’s Cocktail Lounge is 8,000 square feet dedicated to fun, food and fraternizing.

“I would say we are more of a restaurant that anything,” said Owner James Tomaino. “We host meetings and gatherings in our banquet room, and we have birthday parties here — children’s birthdays, Sweet 16 parties and 40-year-old’s birthday parties. We are a nightclub 26 weekends out of the year. All of the other times we are opened, we serve tourists and families and the parents’ of college kids.”

The cocktail lounge opened under Tomaino’s direction on Sept. 8, 2012, after extensive renovation. Walking into the lounge from the South Main Street entrance, visitors may notice the preserved, historic remnants of the former Sears store which occupied the building in the 1970s. 

The white walls, finished in stucco, and supporting Moroccan sconces, feature arches that separate various dining areas. Behind the massive bar area there are iron-studded bars across wooden boards.

“As you can see all of our furniture is movable,” Tomaino said. “This way we can accommodate any type of function. We have bands and live D.J. on some weekend nights. This weekend, we will have a pre-Halloween costume contest with a live D.J.”

The lounge has a modern feel that is carried through in it minimalistic lounge sofas and slat-back chairs.

“My wife designed it and I built it — for the most part,” Tomaino said. “This is a family business. My family has been in the food business in Oneonta for a long time, and my wife’s family has been in the food business for a long time. We work hard and we do a lot. I am a great believer in the reemergence of downtown.”

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