By Joshua Maloni
Youngstown, you're in for a culinary treat.
Chef/baker Rebecca Poletti has moved her kitchen from the Village of Lewiston to the Village of Youngstown.
The former owner/operator of Mangia Café & Bakery on Center Street has moved north to Main Street, where she is opening The Youngstown Galley.
"I came to Youngstown, because I actually love this area," she said. "Really lovely area. People are really super nice. And more opportunity for growth here, buying the building. And I live here now; I live in Youngstown."
She noted, "I love Lewiston; I miss Lewiston, actually, quite a bit. But life throws you curveballs."
One of those twisty pitches was the challenge in renovating a former ice cream parlor.
Poletti closed Mangia in the early spring, and then took the summer and early fall to shape her building at 400 Main St.
"It's been completely renovated - all the electrical, all the plumbing, gutted - completely gutted. Complete redo," she said.
"I wanted a more functioning kitchen," Poletti explained. "I opened up the entire back of the restaurant and put in a small bakery area. ... For what I do, (the pre-existing) kitchen wouldn't work."
Poletti had success with Mangia, which was widely known for its breakfast offerings. She said The Galley is going to be different in that "We're going to do breakfast, lunch and dinner. And we have the ice cream parlor we're going to open in the summer. So, that will be ice cream and baked goods as you go around the side of the building."
"The theme is different," she noted. "It's nautical; there's a boat on the ceiling. And we're in Youngstown, so it's a boating town," she said. "I have beer and wine coming - that's coming in December" and will be served from a bar.
She clarified, "It's not a bar bar. It's going to be dining with beer and wine. No liquor."
As for the menu, there will be some similarities to Mangia.
"I kept a lot of the old favorites that people loved, and then I added dinners," Poletti said. "I hired a chef. So, whatever the chef decides he wants to do as a special, we'll run specials."
"I would call it casual. Casual, wholesome, good food. ... Burgers, steaks; we're going to have some fish frys now. Things like that," Poletti said. "And then, you know, still doing the omelets in the morning and the waffles. Chicken Waldorf. People love the chicken Waldorf. And the quiche is still on the menu."
She added, "Hopefully, people will enjoy the little twist on everything that we do."
Prices are about $1 or $2 less per item than one would expect to pay in a village that welcomes tens of thousands of tourists each summer. Most items, including burgers, salmon, salads and sandwiches, are between $7 and $12.
The Youngstown Galley at 400 Main will be open Tuesday through Sunday. The restaurant is right across the street from The Stone Jug, and next door to Anchor Spirits & Wines.