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Cleveland’s newest restaurant opens its doors and signifies a resurgence of E. 4th street

Cordelia opens in the former spot of Lola's Bistro on E. 4th
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Posted at 9:59 PM, Jul 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-22 06:07:07-04

CLEVELAND — There’s nothing that can bring Cleveland residents together more than food and family, and that’s the point behind Cordelia’s Restaurant on East 4th Street.

“The space, the food, the menu, everything is an ode to the Midwest and to Cleveland,” said Andrew Watts, the owner. “Cordelia is my great-grandmother. It’s named after her. It’s family, it’s heritage, it’s taking care of folks like family does.”

The restaurant sits at 2058 E. 4th Street, in the former home of Michael Symon’s Lola Bistro.

“To have the keys to this space is not something we take lightly,” said Watts.

He is a hospitality veteran, along with his executive chef and partner Vinnie Cimino, who is no stranger to East 4th himself.

“There’s really nothing else like being on East 4th Street. It is what drew me down to Greenhouse Tavern back in the day,” he said.

For the past year, Watts and Cimino have been repurposing, revitalizing and reimagining what the new E. 4th could look like and what it needed.

“We wanted it to be a place where people could come and go anytime, no matter what they are doing. Whether they’re going to a ball game or they wanted to come in all dolled up for a very nice dinner,” said Watts.

The food is a homage to the Midwest, too.

“The food we are referring to as modern grandma,” said Cimino. “Grandma didn’t cook fancy food, but she always cooked really good food and we are just trying to take that to the next level.”

Its opening on Wednesday evening is long-awaited.

“I think we are the last feather in East 4th’s cap for a while. We were the last to reopen and we’ve got some amazing new neighbors and the street is just bustling,” said Watts.

Its opening signifies a resurgence of East 4th, a street filled with restaurants and bars that was affected greatly by the pandemic.

“A lot of businesses definitely shut down and it's nice to see all these new ones popping up, that’s why I’m here today trying this new one,” said Maria Binns, a Cleveland resident.

But Watts said while the past two years for the restaurant industry were bleak, he believes the future is bright.

“It created opportunity. I don’t know if I would’ve ever have the opportunity to have these keys, sitting here, right now, opening Cordelia. It created probably two solid years of very uncertain times for the business, but I think everybody is so, more than ever, ready to be taken care of,” he said.

Cordelia is open Wednesday and Thursday from 4-10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 4 - 11 p.m.