The new year holds significant expansion plans for Ettore’s European Bakery and Restaurant, the longtime fixture on Fair Oaks Boulevard.
The owners of Ettore’s are in the process of taking over the former ASR Restaurant & Lounge in Roseville and anticipate opening it in August as their second location.
The upcoming Ettore’s in Roseville will contain more than 8,500 square feet of interior space and an additional 2,500 square feet of patio. The design of its counters and work areas will allow customers to view employees making certain food items such as pizzas. Diners also will be able see Ettore’s baking operations through a glass window.
“What we found is people respond in a very positive manner when they can see those items being produced in front of them,” said Craig Powell, Ettore’s chief operating officer. “We’re going out of our way to have an interactive experience in the store where you can see cakes being iced and decorated, customized cream puffs that are made right in front of you. We’re also exploring the idea of having a premium Swiss ice cream with fresh fruit that’s produced in front of the customer.”
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The Roseville building, at 390 N. Sunrise Ave., became available following the July closure of the upscale ASR Restaurant & Lounge. ASR’s former owner, Harwinder Bisla, spent $3 million building the restaurant, but its food program never found its stride and it closed after less than two years in business.
In September, Bisla was arrested for allegedly possessing and distributing child pornography. Additional charges of child molestation and a lewd act with a minor were added later. Bisla reportedly has pleaded not guilty to both sets of charges. He was set to appear in court early this month.
With its coming move into the former ASR space, Ettore’s also plans to ramp up its catering operations to serve nearby businesses and health facilities, such as Kaiser Permanente Roseville. In addition to its baked goods, Ettore’s is known locally for its burger, which is sandwiched within a house-baked cheddar scallion bun.
“In Roseville, there’s a need for a unique, high-quality bakery,” Powell said. “There’s also a demand for more neighborhood, non-chain restaurants that operate with the price points that we do.”
To help serve its new eatery and its wholesale supermarket accounts, the company soon will move into new bakery production facility in Natomas, Powell said. Its current facility, near Howe Avenue, creates goods for stores such as Nugget Market as well as certain items for its restaurant operation. The new Natomas facility offers 12,500 square feet, about twice the size of its current production bakery. But baked goods still will be produced on-site at its restaurants.
“You want to create that smell and that ambiance,” Powell said.
Ettore’s on Fair Oaks Boulevard was founded 32 years ago by Ettore Ravazzolo, who also oversees the company in addition to his time in the kitchen. In addition to its expansion plans, the company is developing a mobile phone app and an enhanced website to expedite ordering and customer service. These online upgrades are expected to launch this spring.