For the typically slow-moving Chagrin Falls dining scene, it’s shaping up to be one heck of a year. Already we’ve reported on news that Gamekeeper's Taverne will become a new Hyde Park Restaurant Group concept, that Rick’s Café will reopen as Bell & Flower, and that the recently shuttered North Main Diner will adopt a new identity as Aurelia, an American-style bistro.
Not to be left out of the fun, Yours Truly
(30 North Main St., 440-247-3232) is gearing up for a pretty significant transformation as well. The restaurant, founded in 1982 – just one year after the original in Beachwood – is set to begin work on an ambitious expansion and renovation project that will touch both the interior and exterior of the space.
“We’re doing some exterior demolition of some architectural components, expanding the main floor, adding a second level, doing a significant expansion of the kitchen, and adding full bar service on both levels,” explains founder Larry Shibley.
Demolition work has begun on an adjacent space, the former Lyndall Hughes Co. real estate firm. When the dust settles, the main dining area will grow from approximately 1,800 square feet to 2,500. Much of that space will be gobbled up by the greatly expanded and updated kitchen, says Shibley. Overall capacity will climb from 70 to 100, with the bulk of additional seats coming on board thanks to a new 1,000-square-foot second-level space that will be used for private events and overflow dining.
When completed, the restaurant will look and feel completely different, promises Shibley.
“The architectural theme of the Playhouse Square and Beachwood restaurants is ‘diner industrial look’ and we’re going to continue that in Chagrin Falls and move away from the more Victorian influenced style,” he says.
To that end, the natural wood, crown molding and wainscoting all will be purged to make way for the sleeker new design. That formula also will extend to the façade, including the installation of ultra-clear glass windows that will slide away on pleasant days.
“We’re taking a building that was built in the late-'20s era that had a simple architectural design that fit the period but in the '50s was converted to a Colonial storefront with siding,” Shibley explains. “We’re getting rid of all that – to a lot of people’s dismay – but in the end I think it works and it needs to be updated.”
The goal, he adds, is to keep the restaurant operating during much of the construction process.
“We’ll keep it open as long as possible until we get to the point when we can’t do anymore and then we’ll close and hopefully be down for 60 days,” he says.
Here's a rendering of what the exterior will look like.
Courtesy Yours Truly