This fall, Bar Cena, the latest venture from local chef and restaurateur Dom Ruggiero, is set to take over the former home of his recently-shuttered Vanilla Gorilla, located at 14202 N Scottsdale Rd, according to a press release shared with What Now Phoenix.
“We’re looking forward to expanding our reach and presenting yet another opportunity for guests to experience elevated drinking and dining in a casual and welcoming atmosphere with a neighborhood feel,” said Chef Ruggiero, who also owns and operates Fire at Will and neighboring Hush Public House under the umbrella of his Cast Iron Concepts restaurant group. “We are proud to have some of our existing staff taking the lead on this project and have complete confidence that their talents will shine at Bar Cena.”
Described as a cocktail and dining lounge, Bar Cena will feature an exclusive chef-driven menu as well as a vibrant cocktail program. “Cena” translates to “dinner” or “supper” in French, Spanish, and Italian languages, a nod to the influences that will be highlighted on the seasonally rotating menu.
Hush General Manager Regina Di Salvo and Executive Chef Alex Harrison are spearheading the development of Bar Cena and Chef de Cuisine Zack Myers is heading up the food menu. The menu is set to feature approximately 10 dishes that will rotate with the seasons. Initial examples include Pâté en Croute, Crispy Potato Pave with Duck Fat and Rouille, Mussels Escabeche, and Muffuletta Croquettes with Cured Olives and Fennel.
Two Hands Consulting, LLC, which conceptualized the bar programs at both Hush and Fire at Will, is creating Bar Cena’s cocktail menu featuring seven specialty cocktails. Hush staff will also be contributing their own ideas to the bar program such as espresso martinis on draft and tableside Absinthe service.
Ideal Construction is overseeing the build out of Bar Cena while Stance Architecture is handling the interior design. Bar Cena is scheduled to open in the fall of 2023.
Portions of this article were taken from a press release shared with What Now Phoenix.