Arezzo launched at downtown riverfront dining spot
Updated 6:02 am, Monday, August 13, 2012
After standing vacant for more than a year, a downtown waterfront property on the west bank of the Saugatuck River is saying "ciao" to a new Italian restaurant.
Arezzo opened last week in a 3,150-square-foot space at 5 Riverside Ave., a site offering the only downtown dining patio adjacent to the Saugatuck River.
The new restaurant seats 80 in its main dining room, 40 on the upper level of its outdoor terrace and 30 in a private dining room overlooking Riverside Avenue. Next to the river, the lower level of the terrace will be used for events such as weddings, Bar Mitzvahs and corporate functions.
Open seven days a week, Arezzo will serve lunch six days a week, Sunday brunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday dinner from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Its menu includes pasta, prime steaks, seafood and a range of wines. Most entrees cost between $14 and $36.
Owned by Adele Degl'Innocenti, Arezzo has a staff of about 25 employees.
Downtown Westport's newest Italian restaurant carries on a name that will be familiar to many New York City gourmands. From 2004 to 2011, Degl'Innocenti owned an Arezzo restaurant in Manhattan's Flatiron District. The first Arezzo earned praise from a number of major publications, including New York magazine, which recognized the restaurant with a "critics' pick." Degl'Innocenti has also owned several other restaurants, including Aquaterra in midtown Manhattan and Bizaare Ave Cafe in Lake Worth, Fla.
Arezzo's opening is a sign of the revival of the west side of downtown Westport, an area that has struggled in recent years with vacant storefronts. Before Arezzo's arrival, 5 Riverside Ave. has been unoccupied since another Italian restaurant, Napoli Sul Fiume, closed in December 2010. A few doors down from Arezzo, Westport's Bella Bridesmaid franchise and Art's Delicatessen also moved during the last year into vacant spaces at Riverside Corners, a building that straddles the corner of Post Road West and Riverside Avenue.
"The restaurant will be a great addition to the Westport dining scene," said Alon Panovka, a lawyer who represents Ansley Westport Riverside LLC, the Atlanta-based firm that owns Riverside Corners.
And more dining establishments are set to soon join the menu of west side dining options. The Planning and Zoning Commission approved in June site plans for two new restaurants to open a block away from Arezzo in vacant spaces at 6 and 12 Wilton Road.
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