New pop-up restaurant serving classic Italian fare has great chemistry with Hotel Grinnell
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In the restaurant world, chefs love experimentation. You could say that ingredients are a veritable "periodic table" for chefs' chemistry of creativity.
That's why on Nov. 1, Hotel Grinnell — located about an hour east of Des Moines — will be the new home for a pop-up restaurant, Cilino’s. Cilino’s will temporarily replace the hotel's current restaurant, The Periodic Table, for six months.
Cilino’s of Wellman, a multi-generational home-style cooking Italian restaurant open since January 2018, will open a second location inside the historic Hotel Grinnell. Wellman is located an hour further east from the hotel.
Cilino's serves classic Italian fare like pasta, appetizers, salads, sandwiches and desserts.
"A pop-up restaurant is a great opportunity to test out the Grinnell market while mitigating most of the risk that might prohibit them from coming to a small town," said Angela Harrington, co-owner and operator of Hotel Grinnell. "I’m hoping these six months for Cilino’s inside Hotel Grinnell will result in finding a permanent home in our community. We’re looking forward to offering their Italian flare to our guests and already established clientele.”
Harrington said she is passionate about entrepreneurship and supporting new venture exploratory opportunities within the community. She said the venture will be similar to the "Best Bite" competition in 2012 which resulted in Prairie Canary restaurant.
Cilino’s, established in January 2018, is owned and operated by husband and wife, Randy and Jennie Rodgers.
“Randy’s parents fed everyone that walked through their door his entire life," said Jennie Rodgers. "We use the same food and sauce recipes at Cilino’s that have been handed down from his great-great-grandmother. Everyone, including Randy, encouraged his mother to open a restaurant and when she elected not to, we decided it was a great opportunity for us."
Rodgers said she wants to come to Grinnell because it’s a melting pot community of great restaurants, hotels, and a college town.
"It’s a perfect pitstop between Iowa City and Des Moines," Rodgers said. "Hotel Grinnell and Cilino’s really complement one another. Both are one-of-a-kind, authentic and service-focused. We’re looking forward to this opportunity with hopes of a permanent location in Grinnell.”
The Periodic Table will re-open on May 1, 2020.
Hotel Grinnell Cilino's
Location: 925 Park St., Grinnell
Hours: To be announced