Inside Sheffield's brand new wine bar attached to popular Italian restaurant Gigi's Cucina

After months of work, a new wine bar attached to an Italian restaurant in a Sheffield suburb has now opened and is preparing to launch its new menu selling ‘Venetian-style’ tapas.

Friday, 29th October 2021, 9:25 am

Gigi’s Cucina, based on Oakbrook Road, Nether Green, welcomed customers to their new wine bar, which is located above the restaurant, earlier this month.

Owner Loretta Giaimo-Cossar said the food offering in the wine bar will be cicchetti, which are small plates of food similar to Spanish tapas that originated in Venice, Italy; and the idea is to offer two completely different dining experiences under one roof.

Loretta says they hope to launch the cicchetti menu in a couple of weeks’ time, and it will be the ‘first of its kind for Sheffield’.

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One of the three rooms inside the brand new wine bar above Gigi's Cucina

The bar is comprised of three rooms, all of which have their own distinct style.

"I think customers have been taken aback by how pretty it looks, because no-one knew what it would be like...it’s taken a while to get it to a standard we were happy with,” said Loretta.

She added: “The main bar room is quite rustic, quite like what you would expect to see in a bar, with exposed brick.”

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Inside the new venue.

The second room in the bar has a ‘subtle Oriental theme’ while the third room, which you enter as you come up the stairs, has a green feature wall with a neon sign.

All of the work has been carried out by Loretta's husband and co-owner Ryan Cossar, who has an eye for design.

“The key thing is to make a nice experience for customers...we’ve thought a lot about what we like as customers and have tried to create that here,” added Loretta.

Loretta opened the restaurant with her dad, Gigi, with an ethos that reflected both his Italian heritage and their passion for authentic, yet contemporary, Italian cuisine.

After Gigi passed away, chef Franco Baldan, who hails from Treviso in the Veneto region of Italy, joined the Gigi’s team in 2019, and will be showing diners what the cicchetti menu “is all about,” explained Loretta.

The cicchetti menu is yet to be finalised, but the type of dishes diners can expect to find include grilled baby calamari marinated with gremolata; artichoke hearts with parsley dressing and grana padano cheese and meatballs in a spicy tomato sauce.