The restaurant is located in the space formerly occupied by On A Roll Cafe.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Darleen Zradi always liked to go to a small panini restaurant in Old Orchard Beach.
Eventually, she decided to open her own panini place. And now, she has moved it to downtown Pittsfield.
Zradi opened Leenie's Paninis in the central block building on North Street. She occupies the space where On A Roll Cafe used to be.
"I've always wanted to do a small place in Pittsfield and the opportunity was there," Zradi said.
On A Roll closed its Pittsfield location at the end of February, which was right around the time Zradi's lease was expiring at Leenie's Paninis on Franklin Street in Lenox. By March, she liked what she saw in that spot and signed a lease.
"I was kind of searching around and I heard that this would be available. I did look at a few other places," Zradi said. "I just felt like this would be the perfect place for me."
She spent months renovating the inside with new flooring, furniture, and kitchen equipment. The former owner of Sullivan Station brought some antiques from that restaurant for decor. On Thursday, she opened for business with specials throughout the day.
"We have a nice bakery. We have vegan, vegetarian options. We have homemade breads, bagels, cupcakes, cookies, pretty much everything," Zradi said.
The menu includes breakfast all day, protein bowls, a number of salads and soup, and a full bakery. And, of course, about a dozen different paninis. She said the food is all farm to table and there are an array of vegetarian options.
"Nobody does what I do. Everybody is different," Zradi said of the eatery options in downtown Pittsfield.
Currently, there are a dozen tables for patrons to sit at. But, soon she will have another eight in the hallway outside of the business.
"Eventually I am going to open for dinner on Friday and Saturday nights," Zradi said, adding that she'll be looking for a beer and wine license as well and will bring back some of her specialties from Sullivan Station.
Zradi owned Sullivan Station for nine years and closed it in 2017. She opened the smaller restaurant in Lenox after the closure. Now in downtown Pittsfield, Leenie's Paninis is open from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The restaurant also offers delivery and take out.
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