Two months removed from the shutter of both Vinizza Osteria Enoteca restaurants, on Metcalfe and at Jean-Talon Market, Avicor Construction business partners Rodi Callegari, Frank Varano and Aldo Vicenzo have given the former a face-lift. The pasta and wood-fired pizza slinger gets reborn today as MKT, with a focus on Italian and Mediterranean cuisine. Marino Tavares, who spent 18 years in the kitchen at Ferreira Café, is in as chef.
Not long after Vinizza's arrival in late 2011, the Gazette wrote: "Why do inhabitants of Little Italy have to get all of the good stuff? Recently green with envy by an instagram onslaught of a friend’s culinary tour through the neighbourhood known for it gnocci, I was thrilled to hear of a North end native that recently opened a second location on Metcalfe. Only blocks away from my office (and a hop, skip and jumb from the Bell Centre for hockey season), Vinizza Osteria Enoteca is set to become a staple."
Later, Gazette critic Sarah Musgrave granted the restaurant a 'Good bet' but ended her review with a cautionary note: "I just wished the experience were more cool and low-key. The bar-height seating that leaves toes swinging above the floor, the Italian-style Ricky Martin music, the tragically nervous waitress and the water in wine glasses, all no-nos for me. It felt more precarious than relaxed, although there is considerable charm and care under the surface. Vinizza has some good pizza, it doesn’t need to work so hard to impress."
Status: MKT, 2044 Metcalfe, certified open.