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Café Napolitana Announces Second Location, Aracri Pizzeria, Coming to the Gateway

Lauren Sega Lauren Sega Café Napolitana Announces Second Location, Aracri Pizzeria, Coming to the GatewayPhoto by Lauren Sega.
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Downtown’s long-standing pizzeria, Café Napolitana, will open a second location in the University District this fall.

Under the same ownership of Dee and Palmo Aracri, the new spot will take up a new name: Aracri Pizzeria. Located at 1607 N. High St., it’ll reside in the Gateway building once occupied by PizzaRev, the LA-based franchise that vacated Central Ohio only a year after arriving.

Going into a turnkey operation, Dee Aracri anticipates a quick makeover before celebrating a grand opening on October 1. The plan is for a relatively simple menu: pizza by the slice, as well as 10-inch, 12-inch, and 16-inch pizzas, a few subs, and a couple of salads.

The space offers 2,400 square feet, enough room for about 65 guests. Service will be Chipotle-style, “in the sense that you walk in and you’re corralled around, and there’s a display of food you pick from,” Dee Aracri says. While they won’t immediately have a liquor license, Aracri says beer and wine will eventually be offered.

Located close to campus, its hours of operation will vary from those of the Downtown location. Open seven days a week, Aracri Pizzeria will stay open until midnight on Monday through Saturday, and until 10 p.m. on Sundays.

After nearly 27 years Downtown, operating Café Napolitana as well as Alley Bar, the Aracri family looks forward to serving the campus area. Though, Dee Aracri says they were originally looking south of Downtown for their second location.

“[The Gateway] approached us, because I guess they’re transitioning that neighborhood and they don’t want chains anymore, they want local,” she says, “so they are approaching all the local business owners and trying to get all of the local businesses down there.”

“We are so excited to be adding a local, family-owned authentic Italian pizzeria to the mix at Gateway – University District,” said Erin Prosser, director of community development for Campus Partners. “If you’ve ever been to the owner’s Café Napolitana in downtown Columbus, you know just how great the food is. We expect this new concept, Aracri Pizzeria, to quickly become a neighborhood favorite.”

Aracri Pizzeria will join other locally-owned businesses opening up at the Gateway, including Elia Athenian Grill and Coffee Connections. Barbacoa Mexican Fusion & Bar, also locally owned, opened recently in the University District, just north of the Gateway on the corner of East Woodruff and High Streets.

For more information, visit cafenapolitana.com

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