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Piazza Italia's refurb is nearly complete and it looks like the new incarnation is going to be a deli cum cafe. A sign says they are hiring (barista and sandwich counter staff), the shelves are stocked and the window display is a vision of Italian yumminess - biscuits, pastas, interesting things in packets and jars and a 3kg tub of Nutella.
I hope it goes well for them. A good continental deli would be a nice addition to the Topsfield Parade food quarter.
Glancing in as I passed by it reminded me of Bunce's from about 5 years ago in the same premises. The Arthouse deli seems to have come a cropper.
It's really nice & airy inside & has tables that flow to an outdoor space at the back. Hope it does well. And if they could replicate Bunces' aubergine pesto I'd be doubly happy.
I went to look at the menu today - seems OK - Italian food not too dear, but the place was closed "for inventory", tho' it seemed totally empty to me.
Called in this afternoon to ask about dinner but that's only available on Friday , Saturday, Sunday. So still no luck getting in. 'Rather average' might be quite a high standard - perhaps one below 'good enough' - especially if at reasonable prices. Most dishes in Piazza Italia are about £8 or £9. Two courses in Bistro Aix are £18, all you can eat in Saki £16.80. St. James is offering a two course meal for £9.95 before 7.
On the theme of not getting in, I also went to look at Citrus and Cocoa - which having spent a long time pre-official opening is now closed to process feedback on the first week of trading. If preparation is the secret of success then C and C deserves to be successful.
So we went to Banners instead.