A Long Island restaurant owner who had offered free catering to customers if the Giants won burned $60,000 in catering bills Monday as he settled his bets.
Al Horowitz, the owner of Smokin' Al's restaurants in Bay Shore and Massapequa Park, never stopped smiling, even as the credit card receipts created a roaring fire on his restaurant grill.
"I won. I won," he insisted. "I made a lot of good friends for me and Smokin' Al's."
Horowitz watched the catering bills go up in smoke after promising free food to about 300 catering customers if the Giants beat the Patriots.
Customer Jerry Glibbery said he was skeptical about the bet at the beginning, but now the Seaford man is off the hook for more than $200 in ribs, brisket, mashed potatoes and cornbread he served friends and family during his Super Bowl party.
"They didn't know about the deal until afterwards," Glibbery said. "So, after the Giants won I said, 'Everything you just ate is free,' and they were like, 'What? I can't believe it!'"
Chris Sadusky and 14 colleagues from a Long Island car dealership had ordered about $300 worth of food. They also walked away without having to pay a dime.
"When I came in this morning, everyone said, 'How did you do in your numbers pool?'" said Sadusky. "I said, 'I didn't win the numbers but we won free food!'"
Despite his cash losses, Horowitz said he never once rooted for New England, not even as Tom Brady's final Hail Mary pass was in the air at game's end.
"A friend told me, 'I am rooting for the Patriots for you,'" said Horowitz. "And I told him, 'No. I want the Giants to win.'"
Horowitz's bonfire of bills would have been even larger, but he cut off the promotion at around $60,000, even though many more customers wanted to take his bet.
Super Bowl Sunday was far from a lost day for Smokin' Al's. Paying business was up 20 percent, Horowitz said -- the two restaurants' best day ever.