Longtime Ann Arbor Italian restaurant closes, to be replaced by a vegan restaurant

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Emma Richter/Daily

 

Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 9:20pm

An Ann Arbor favorite for Italian food Argiero’s restaurant closed its doors permanently last Sunday. The restaurant has been owned and operated by the Argiero family since 1977. Located in Kerrytown at the corner of Detroit Street and Catherine Street, the restaurant was frequented by families, couples and Ann Arbor Farmers Market attendees.

The restaurant was popularized by its outdoor seating, cannolis and Italian dishes. Some students, like Public Health junior Jeff Sondheimer was upset by its closing.

“My family and I went to Argiero’s a few times,” said Sondheimer. “It’s disappointing to hear that they are closing. Their spaghetti was delicious.”

In January 2016, Tony Argiero, the original owner, passed away, leaving the restaurant to his children, specifically owner Carmino Argiero.

While the restaurant's Yelp page is still active, the official Argerio website has been removed. Carmino Argiero could not be reached for comment.

The Lunch Room, a vegan restaurant also located in Kerrytown, will be taking over the Argiero’s property to install its third location in Ann Arbor. Aside from its Kerrytown location, the The Lunch Room also boasts a bakery and cafe inside the Huron Towers Apartments in Ann Arbor.

The new addition to The Lunch Room family will be called the Detroit Street Filling Station, based on the building’s original 1925 name — The Staebler Family Oil Company filling station.

Its menu will change with the seasons, featuring vegan cuisine made from local produce from the company’s Belleville farm. The restaurant will also have a full bar and outdoor patio seating.

LSA junior Yoshiki Yamamoto said he is eager for the new restaurant to open. A frequent patron of The Lunch Room, Yamamoto found the news of the latest restaurant addition exciting.

“When I have gone to The Lunch Room, I have always enjoyed the down-to-earth and friendly atmosphere that they have created,” Yamamoto said. “I really hope to see them carry this over to the new restaurant with good, wholesome food.”

With the new location being just a few blocks away from the current restaurant, owners Phillis Engelbert and Joel Panozzo plan to transform it. The spot will serve vegan “comfort” food during the day and transition to a casual place for drinks and dessert in the evening, Englebert said in an interview with The Metro Times.

"Ann Arbor is really receptive to the food and atmosphere that we're offering," Engelbert said. “The new space will allow us to more comfortably accommodate our growing clientele. Our little dining room at Kerrytown has been bursting at the seams for over a year now, and customers daily ask us when we are going to expand. We are excited for the opportunity to do that now.”