To learn how restaurant Trentina came to be you must first hear the story of The Colleoni Sisters. In 1927, Lena Colleoni and her husband Luigi immigrated to the United States from Trento, Italy. Unfortunately Lena's husband did not assimilate well to the United States and left his wife and children alone to move back to Italy. Lena stayed in America and raised three amazing strong daughters, Louisa, Gloria, and Anna all on her own in Cleveland, Ohio.
Louisa grew up to be my grandmother and played the role of mother to me. She taught me to dream big and love hard. She, alongside my father inspired me to learn about my Trentino heritage and through Italian Clubs and educational programs I was fortunate enough to experience Trento firsthand on a college abroad program. I fell in love with Autonomous Provincia of Trento that year.
Years later I lost my grandmother and I as searched to hold on to her memory I remembered my time in Trento, the homeland of her family. I introduced my husband Chef Jonathon Sawyer to the region and he was able to spend a few months cooking, traveling, and falling in love with the valleys, the people, and the culture. He immediately noticed similarities between the summits of Trentino and the Cuyahoga Valley here in our home state of Ohio. Jonathon's mind of a chef was inspired by the cuisine, the ingredients, and the history. After his journey, his desire to educate himself in all things Trentino grew exponentially. When he came home to Cleveland, he knew that he had to open a restaurant.
Restaurant Trentina was born.
Trentina will be located in the cultural district of University Circle in Cleveland, Ohio. Trentina will be the first restaurant Jonathon and I will be opening on our own. No outside influences, just us. Stripped down and simple, Trentina will be an intimate restaurant showcasing the food of the Trentino region of Northern Italy. Jonathon and I will be building and designing the restaurant ourselves and plan to open by May 2014.
Chef Jonathon Sawyer's menu for Trentina will be inspired by the commonality of ingredients between the vals and mountains of Trento and the valley of Cuyahoga. The menu will be an updated approach to such classic dishes as strangolapreti, carne salada, canederli, torta de patate, and many more Tyrolean specialties.
Trentina is our way of continuing the story of The Colleoni Sisters and the story of so many other families in this great country who brought their culture, their food, and their lives to America.
To thank you for you support for this project that is so near and dear to us, we have come up with some pretty amazing rewards for you. Check them out:
Jonathon and Amelia Sawyer
Risks and challenges
Restaurant Trentina has been in the works for almost 4 years. It started with a simple visit to the region of Trento in Italy and now we are almost at completion. We hope that Restaurant Trentina will be up and running by April 2014 but as most of us know sometimes things happen when building your dream.
We have seen restaurant projects through from a glimmer in the minds eye all the way to opening night and know full well the risks and problems that can arise. Contractors are fickle, the electricity is old, and the concrete poured was wrong. These are all things we have gone through in the past and our drive to open the restaurant has always been more powerful than any tribulation we have faced.
Jonathon and I have a very strong voice online. We will documenting the entire project on our Facebook page, our webpage, and throughout our various social media accounts. The support you are giving here helps us pursue our dreams of giving Cleveland an unforgettable restaurant and we want to share each moment with you.
aka Chef's Widow
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