My dad is a simple man.

He loves his Tom Brady, his orange cats, a Marlboro red, and a good steak.

This man loves a good steak so much he used to pile our family into the car and drive two hours to Hilltop Steak House in Massachusetts from our home in Maine just to get a good piece of meat.

I thought he was nuts but whenever I share this fun fact with people I am shocked to hear the same story from them. I know at least four other families that used to make the two hour trek from Maine just to eat at Hilltop.

Hilltop Steak House

Just like my family, Hilltop Steak House drew customers in from everywhere and was always worth the trip no matter where you traveled from. Sitting right on Route 1 in Saugus, Massachusetts, both locals and travelers flocked to the landmark.

The Hilltop Cactus is a nostalgic and iconic Route 1 landmark whether you’ve ever been to the restaurant or not. When I was little and we took trips to Boston, I always knew I was close when I saw the 70-foot cactus on the horizon.

The fan favorite sadly closed their doors in 2013 after 52 years of business and on their last day, hundreds of customers waited in line to get their last steak and to say a sorrowful farewell to the Old West atmosphere.

Boston Magazine shared what the management team released in regard to the restaurant’s closing:

“Tremendous efforts have been made over this period by our management and staff with the cooperation of the town to make improvements and overcome this decline. However, the continued change in the demographic of our customer base, increased competition and the increased cost to run this fabulous landmark has been too great to overcome. We therefore have no choice but to close our restaurant.”

It seems all of my favorite restaurants growing up have waved their goodbyes. If we weren’t at Hilltop, my family was at The Village Café, but the nostalgic eateries that raised me are sadly no more. These were iconic places that brought families and friends together and created memories that truly do last a lifetime.

I already know I’m not the only one who drove two hours from Maine to eat here, did you ever make the trek?

The closing of Hilltop Steak House disrupted many families, just like mine. Upon the announcement of their closing, these were some of the comments expressed on social media:

Customers Comment on Hilltop Steak House Closing in 2013

The Route 1 landmark in Saugus, Massachusetts, Hilltop Steak House, closed back in 2013 and customers were and still are extremely disheartened.

These 50 Restaurants Closed in Maine and We Wish They Would Come Back

A nostalgic list that makes your belly growl. Do you remember them?