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Images of the new-look Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen on Center Street.
Images of the new-look Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen on Center Street.

Photos: Gallo reopens with new look

by jmaloni
Fri, Apr 19th 2024 10:05 am

Left of Center with Joshua Maloni

When it comes to his Village of Lewiston restaurants, Michael Hibbard is not content with being content.

He recently refurbished Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen – a dining spot that’s not yet 3 years old.

“We did some renovations – mostly cosmetic,” Hibbard said Tuesday. “We added a fireplace into the dining room area in a little bit of like a cocktail/lounge area for people that are waiting for a table, so they don't have to stand up near the bar. And by doing that, we added a separation for the kitchen so it's not as visible. A lot of that harsh light that was coming into the dining space was eliminated.

“Just freshened up all the paint on all the walls. It's been about two-and-a-half years since we opened and, obviously, the restaurant got some abuse. So, we just wanted to clean some things up in the kitchen, as well as the dining room. Steam clean all the flooring.”

These changes have been well received.

“It's been a week since we've reopened, and everything that we kind of planned in our head of how the space should look and feel more welcoming, I feel we accomplished that,” Hibbard said. “And then what's been nice is, over this past week since we've been open, that's the reaction from a vast majority of the people that have come in, is they feel more comfortable in this space.”

Gallo’s second-floor banquet area was a big hit over the holidays – and it, too, was retouched.

“We have freshly painted walls, and we're working on getting some new chairs up into that space as well,” Hibbard said.

He noted the success his team has found here is because “What we did in our banquet space, to start, is really just kind of start small scale. Try not to offer so much on the menu that it just made the kitchen bogged down.”

Today, “Pretty much everything on our existing menu we do provide in the banquet space, as well. And that's something that we're improving upon because we feel like we got to a point now where we're successfully able to do banquets in that space – and really kind of wrap our heads around how that dynamic works, because it's on the second floor,” Hibbard said. “We've been able to achieve that, and it's all really been word of mouth, our banquet space and how we've been booking, thus far. So, we're excited to really improve on that. And now that we have a good, solid base, that's really kind of the direction we're moving forward into this season.”

Gallo also offers an outdoor gathering place, with a pergola and bar amenities, that can seat a little more than 100 people; as well as a wine area off the side of the first-floor dining room that can accommodate up to 10 people in a more intimate setting.

Across Center Street, at Gather, Hibbard said new chef Jeremiah Siford has been a hit.

“That's another thing we're excited about,” he noted. “We're changing up the verbiage a little bit on the sign. Instead of ‘American Eatery,’ it's just going to be ‘Bar Restaurant.’ Really maximizing the abilities of our new chef is what we're excited about for the summer season.”

Visit Gallo Coal Fire Kitchen at 402 Center St., Gather Bar Restaurant at 453 Center St., and online at https://www.gallocoalfirekitchen.com/.

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