Someone got a real deal on the vintage trolley that once resided inside the Spaghetti Warehouse in Dallas' West End.
The restaurant shuttered in October after 47 years at that location, but offered most of its equipment, fixtures, and decorative items in a monster auction with 491 items or sale — including the trademark trolley, treasured by so many diners over the years.
Hosted by TAGeX Brands, the Spaghetti Warehouse auction began promptly on October 20, after the restaurant closed, and was online for nine days, ending on October 29.
The trolley auction, which ended at 10 am, scored 20 bids, for a final sale price of $3,125. It was sold to mysterious Bidder #23941 — bidders are identified by number only, no name — who came in at the last minute on the morning of October 29 with the winning bid. He overtook poor steadfast Bidder #25406, who was the first to make a bid and had been in it for the long haul.
Of course, the ticket price of the trolley doesn't represent a portion of what it will cost to actually get it. The winning bidder is required to remove the vehicle, which will entail removing a portion of a brick wall from the restaurant and rebuilding the wall. Which must be done by a contractor.
So the $3,125 is chump change compared to what the ultimate cost will be.
Shockingly, the trolley wasn't even the biggest ticket item.
The top earner was a dark-horse historical item: A hand-engraved plaque, made in 1892, commemorating the 400th anniversary of the discovery of America displayed in the Columbia Exposition of 1893, which contains engraved portraits of all the deceased presidents at that time.
With 16 bids, it drew an impressive $8,026.
Other big sellers included the restaurant's vintage espresso machine, no brand name, but lots of pretty brass and hammered copper, which netted $4,775.
Spaghetti Warehouse branded items did well; for example, the Spaghetti Warehouse sign that hung over the door outside went for $1,800.
Antique niceties such as chandeliers and stained glass windows also fetched high prices. An elaborate wall mount mirror with carvings was a big seller at $2,326, snagged by Bidder #26044, an active player who also threw down a few bids for the trolley.
And some of the antique furniture performed well, including an ornate wooden hutch for $2,050.
A cool wooden phone booth went for an affordable $735. That's cheaper than a couch.
A very practical Hoshizaki ice machine with bin was bagged for a mere $710 after 26 bids. A mega-useful 80-liter Hobart floor mixer enjoyed a brisk flurry of last-minute bidding, climbing rapidly from $890 up to the winning bid of $2,001 in the final 5 minutes of the auction.
TAGeX Brands spokesman Josh Bowman says his company has done similar auctions for other Spaghetti Warehouse locations across the country, but this one was unique because it was the original location and had numerous vintage treasures.
All of the auctions started at $1 with no reserves, and it was free to bid. Winning bidders will have two days to pick up their acquisitions and take home a piece of Spaghetti Warehouse history.
The items can still be seen on the online auction but will eventually be pulled from the site.