The space on Washington Street formerly occupied by is expected to reopen next month as an Italian restaurant named Yannalfo's.
The restaurant will be opened by Brett Yannalfo, 43, of Andover, who said he has already met with the Board of Selectmen and is just waiting for the liquor license transfer to be finalized.
Although his professional background has been rooted in "the corporate world," Yannalfo said he has family members who have owned restaurants and pubs and has always dreamed of opening a space of his own.
"I grew up Italian, so hosting people is second nature to me and that being said, I am going to keep it as Italian, but a little more casual and sort of ‘comfort food’ Italian than when Frank was doing his cooking," Yannalfo said.
In March, After 20 years in business, owner Frank Pellino appeared before the Board of Selectmen to explain why he had closed his doors. The main reason for the sudden closing, he said, was the recent opening of a new Pellino's Ristorante in the North End of Boston.
"We've opened a second establishment in the North End of Boston and the reason I closed is because I lost two key employees, a cook and a manager," Pellino said at the meeting. "There was no way I could have had both open at the same time."
Although the restaurant will still serve Italian fare, Yannalfo said local residents can expect to see some changes to the menu.
"I heard from a lot of people that they liked Frank’s place but it was a bit pricy, so it seemed to become more of a ‘special occasion’ place and I want to do it as a place that is more good quality and affordable with excellent service so that it could become a ‘usual place’ for people to go to," Yannalfo said in an email. "I haven’t finished the menu since I am in the process of hiring a chef and they’d need to have input - but it will be more along the lines of an Olive Garden type menu, just with more fresh products so that the quality is better."
Yannalfo said his aim is to open a restaurant "where you and your significant other will love the food so you’ll come on a regular basis. My staff and I will get to know you so that you feel more like you’re visiting friends and truly enjoy you experience with us."
Yannalfo is hoping to open in the second or third week of June.
Yannalfo's won't be the only Italian restaurant opening in Marblehead next month - is expected to open in the space formerly occupied by .
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