ONE of Middlesbrough’s longest standing family-run Italian restaurants has reopened after its only unscheduled closure in almost 20 years of trading.
And the owner of Joe Rigatoni’s, on Linthorpe Road, has issued an apology to his customers for the unexpected closure while also praising staff for making sure the shutdown lasted just 24 hours.
Paolo Arceri, who opened the restaurant in 1994, is also offering past and present customers a 50% discount off food to make up for its recent issues up until early December.
The restaurant has long suffered with the problem of fly-tippers leaving rubbish at the rear of the building and recently made a complaint to Middlesbrough Council.
During their subsequent visit to the site, environmental health officers from the council’s Community Protection Service declared that Joe Rigatoni’s did not meet with its stringent standard.
Acting fast to rectify the problem, staff and management at the restaurant worked round the clock to completely cleanse the kitchen and, the next day, a certificate was issued to reopen the venue.
Paolo Arceri said: “I’d like to apologise to our loyal customers for this recent blip in our long history and assure them that we’ve probably now got the cleanest kitchen in Middlesbrough and take cleanliness extremely seriously.
“I hope they take me up on my 50% food offer and see for themselves that we’re still the same great authentic Italian restaurant that we’ve always been.”
Meanwhile, Joe Rigatonis’ sister restaurant in Stockton, Joe’s Antipasti, opened last week after a period of significant refurbishment and a menu change.
In addition, Paolo, his brother Vincenzo and his new business partner Martin Quinn, a well-known Chef in the North East, are also opening a new pan-Asian venue called Tuk Tuk, in the New Year, above the Stockton riverside site.
See www.joerigatoni.co.uk for more on Joe Rigatonis