24 Jun New Italian restaurant Radunare in The Woodlands aims for f…
Photo: Image Courtesy Radunare / Image Courtesy Radunare
Dr. Frank Morello Jr. likes a challenge, and that is why he has decided to open a new family-style Italian restaurant in The Woodlands called Radunare. The new eatery — slated to open in late July — will feature traditional Italian dishes created from timeless family recipes handed down by his parents and grandparents, who are Sicilian, Morello said.
“I’m from probably the last generation where grandma remembers their parents coming from the homeland. With society changing, it is less important. I’m trying to repackage that good taste and togetherness and put that into a money-making restaurant concept,” Morello said. “I am a self-driven and successful person and I’ve been thinking about this for 10 years. Some have told me I’m crazy, while others have told me to ‘go for it.’ I gravitate toward those who say ‘go for it.’”
The restaurant will be at 2520 Research Forest Drive, Suite 500, The Woodlands, and is scheduled to be open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. According to a press release about the restaurant, the name “Radunare” roughly translates into “to gather or rally,” something considered essential in Italian social culture where friendships and family relations often play out in the kitchen and at the dinner table.
Radunare will feature a full breakfast menu with espresso bar, and serve up Sicilian and Italian traditional breakfast meals ranging from an egg panini featuring scrambled eggs, Taleggio cheese, bacon, green onions and breakfast potatoes; the Italian Sausage to a healthy spinach scramble with cherry tomato, baby spinach, basil, Parmesan and breakfast potatoes.
After the morning service, the restaurant will transform into its “all-day menu” that features both small plates as well as sandwiches, appetizers and dinner meals. Classic Italian staples such as bruschetta, mussels with white wine, butter, garlic, cherry tomatoes and house marinara and savory stuffed Sicilian artichoke are complemented with traditional meatballs with house marinara, mozzarella and basil. Soups and salads are also on the menu along with Italian desserts and a full bar with signature cocktails, beer and wine, the press release stated.
Morello, whose family hails from Sicily, said the recipes and dishes will be based on generations of his family’s deep-held recipes, such as what he described in a pres release as a “well-guarded family recipe” for eggplant Parmesean.
“We’re going to try to put a new twist (one things). In my family, we all make sauce. My brother makes it different than I do. My sister makes it a little different, and my mom and dad make it differently. It is all derived from the very common stock of ingredients we’ve all used and grandma tweaked,” Morello said in a telephone interview. “A lot of the traditional lasagnas and eggplant dishes, and a lot of the desserts. We’re going to try to repackage it for a new society and a new consumer. Hopefully, if my dad walks in, he’ll taste something, he’ll say, ‘This is what I remember it tasting like.’ But if my kids walk in, they’ll say, ‘OK, this is cool, this is what new Italian is going to be.’”
Morello said to kick-off his commitment to the community, he is hosting a soft opening…