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New Gelato And Pizza Shop Now Open in Former La Gelateria Space

Vero Bistro wants to bring Italian favorites back to the Cedar Fairmount Business District — with a new twist.

A popular pizza and gelato shop that closed last year has been replaced by a, well, pizza and gelato shop. 

The owner, Cleveland Heights resident Marc-Auréle Buholzer, worked for in the Cedar Fairmount Business District off and on for many years. The experience inspired him to create his own store, and he .

“The community loved this place,” he said.

But he says he offers something a little different.

The restaurant, , which means true or real in Italian, will stay open year-round, all the time. Buholzer, 28, has redecorated the interior to look more like a café or bistro and added more tables. He covered the light blue walls with olive and rust tones. He also serves a specific type of pizza — Napolitano.

“I’m excited for everyone to be able to experience the great pizza, the good gelato, and have another place to try,” Buholzer said.

He explained what makes Napolitano pizza special — the San Marzano tomatoes, the thin, light crust. He serves traditional pepperoni and margherita pizzas but also features modern toppings like truffle oil and arugula. The pies are cooked in a wood-burning oven in 900-degree heat — it takes just 90 seconds to three minutes.  

And then there’s the gelato. Buholzer features a variety of flavors including hazelnut, banana, chocolate, peanut butter, lemon and pistachio. The traditional flavors are offered consistently, and he rotates about a half dozen others.

He knows there are risks in opening a new business, but he has confidence he’ll succeed because of the support local merchants receive in the city.

“When you look at Cleveland Heights, it is all locally-owned, independent businesses," he said. "It’s a gamble to open an independent business, but I couldn’t say that it’s much of a gamble in Cleveland Heights."

Buholzer, who has been working in restaurants off and on since he was 16 years old, plans to hire about 10 people. His dad and girlfriend are helping him, too.

"I'm not Italian, I just have a personal interest in pizza. I've always had a close relationship around food. I grew up in a European family and that was always something really important."

Vero Bistro. 12421 Cedar Road, 216-229-8383, www.verocleveland.com. Open Mon. - Thurs. & Sun. 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.; Fri.- Sat. 11 a.m. - 10 p.m. Prices: $8 to $12 for pizza, $3 and up for gelato.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published May 3, 2012, and has been updated.

Garry Kanter June 11, 2012 at 04:53 PM
Even though this is a minor topic, I am delighted that a thoughtful, informative discussion like the one above takes place on this site. You guys are the best, Michelle!
Jill Sommer June 11, 2012 at 06:21 PM
I'm thrilled that we will once again have a gelato place in Cedar-Fairmount. And I can't wait to try the pizza.
Michelle Simakis June 13, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Thanks, Garry. And thanks for all of your comments and participation!
Garry Kanter June 13, 2012 at 04:10 AM
While I'm thinking about it, when you post a comment, I don't get an e-mail notification. I've noticed this over the past few weeks. I don't think anything has changed, I think I just never noticed before.
Marc-Aurele Buholzer June 18, 2012 at 06:32 PM
we do offer sit down service, and the staff will make sure you don't have to get up until u r done or ready for gelato! i think you will be pleased with the changes in service, quality and environment.

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