The Guzzo family (known for their eponymous cinema chain around Greater Montreal) appear to be diving further into the restaurant business, and developing a higher-end chain pizza restaurant.
The family is about to open a new location of pizzeria Giulietta closer to central Montreal. It will take up residence right alongside the Guzzo Cinema at the Marché Central shopping complex, just north of highway 40 at Acadie.
The family opened its first Giulietta at the St-Léonard Guzzo a little over a year ago, with a focus on Neapolitan-style pizza in a sleek-but-casual setting. Beyond pizza, a few pasta options and Italian classics like osso bucco also figure into the menu, alongside private import wines and Italian cocktails.
The new location will follow the same format, and there’s an emphasis on making the space appealing, too: the owners have tapped designer Jean-Pierre Viau (Toqué, Patrice Pâtissier) for the new location — expect a bright, welcoming space with splashes of colour.
It seems that Vincent Guzzo and famiglia are planning to turn Giulietta into a chain of sorts, possibly as a sort of sister restaurant to slot in alongside various Guzzo Cinema locations. Beyond Marché Central, further locations are currently planned for St-Jean-sur-Richelieu (this spring) as well as Terrebonne and Dollard-des-Ormeaux.
While that “chain” descriptor might put some off, it’s worth noting that there’s an emphasis on quality here, and Giulietta seems to be aiming to occupy the same league as restaurants like Pizzeria No 900. If the locations do end up being alongside Guzzo Cinemas, that could be a good play. Those cinemas are mostly in malls with standard food court fare, so the presence of something higher-quality and a little more formal might draw in customers — and it could be especially appealing to the “dinner and a movie” crowd.
Guzzo isn’t doing it alone — also in on the general expansions are Francis Rodrigue of Old Montreal resto Jellyfish, and chef Erik Mandracchia (known for his work at snacky Italian spot Fiorellino).
Expect the Marché Central location to open by the end of the month.