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Two Italian restaurants heading to Batavia

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012 6:45 p.m. CDT

BATAVIA – The city soon will get two Italian eateries.

The City Council's Government Services Committee on Monday recommended giving a liquor license to Fantastico Italian restaurant. Sam Abdelnour, owner and head chef, told aldermen he plans to reopen the restaurant at 227 W. Wilson St. in downtown Batavia by the middle of November.

Bella Olivia Italian restaurant also is getting ready to open in the former CiCi's Pizza at 2014 W. Wilson St., Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke told aldermen.

Aldermen attending the committee meeting said they were glad to hear the news. The full City Council will vote on the liquor license for Fantastico at its meeting Monday.

"I missed your meatballs," 4th Ward Aldermen Jim Volk told Abdelnour.

The restaurant closed last year after it had been open for 14 years. The restaurant previously had been on North River Street until moving to its Wilson Street location in 2006.

Charm Thai had been in the space for the past year before closing in August. Abdelnour still owns the building and said he closed the restaurant last year because he needed to take a break. The restaurant’s emphasis will continue to be Italian and Mediterranean food, Abdelnour said.

Fantastico will be open for dinner seven days a week, Abdelnour said. Dining, carryout and catering will be available.

CiCi's Pizza closed its doors earlier this year, citing a lack of business. Fantastico and Bella Olivia restaurants are among several restaurants set to open soon, including Golden Corral and Chick-fil-A.

"Each one of these restaurants brings with them new job opportunities and some additional sales taxes for us," Schielke said.

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