A secret no more: the "east side" location for Trentina, Jonathon and Amelia Sawyer's new Italian restaurant, is the old Sergio's in University Circle. That 35-seat spot, which had a 20-year run, has been vacant since it abruptly closed a few months after the death of chef-owner Sergio Abramof.
The Sawyers have released the video that will accompany their Kickstarter campaign, which will go live within days, says Sawyer. The amount the couple hopes to raise — $21,999 — is far less than the overall funds they'll need to open and get going.
"This is not full funding, just a nice alternative to traditional financing," Sawyer explains. "The truth of the matter is, a lot of us artisans are more skilled with their knives and cutting boards than they are an Excel document or filing loan applications."
Donors to the Trentina Kickstarter can earn rewards that range from a dinner party for 20 people and a cooking class with chef Sawyer to a cocktail or even table named in your honor.
"We wanted the rewards to be really tangible and experiential, not lofty," Sawyer adds. "The sentiment for us is, this is a restaurant for Clevelanders by Clevelanders. It's an opportunity for us to really go out on a limb with a high-end restaurant, and to showcase some of the tableside touches and theatrics that people love at the Tavern."
Thanks to a relatively turn-key property, the Sawyers hope to open in May or sooner.
Check out the video here.