Former European Cafe to open under new ownership

Former European Cafe to open under new ownership

SMITHFIELD - The once-troubled and now-closed European Cafe and Restaurant at 645 Douglas Pike has new owners who hope to re-open it May 11, Mother's Day, with a new name, a new menu, and - no outside bands.

The business assets other than the building itself have been acquired by B.M.D. LLC, whose partners are Robert Buitta, of Lincoln; and Joseph Mazzone, of Smithfield.

Buitta told The Valley Breeze & Observer that his corporation, which otherwise focuses on construction, has hired a general manager, Edward DiPrete - no relation to the former governor - to operate what will be known as the 645 Restaurant and Bar, catering to a family clientele.

DiPrete was formerly associated with the Jan Companies, which own a number of restaurants, including the Newport Creamery, and country clubs.

Alluding to the former restaurant's problems with the surrounding neighborhood, Buitta said if any music is offered it will be "low-key" and inside.

The former ownership, which closed up when the business went into receivership, was sanctioned twice by the Town Council after neighbors complained about loud music on the patio.

The 2,600-square-foot building, constructed in 1952, is owned by Aledom LLC, whose principal is Dib G. Tannous, of North Providence.

The European Cafe was opened in 2008 by Elia Nassios. When the business went into receivership its assets were bought by Susan Aguiar, a Boston lawyer and private lender who was the major creditor.

The court-appointed receiver, William Delaney, said she recently sold to B.M.D.

At Delany's request, the Town Council had been renewing the full-privilege liquor license each year so it would be available if a new owner were found.

The council on Tuesday approved the license transfer to B.M.D.