The Bella Viva Ristorante e Caffè
7423 Monterey Street
Gilroy, CA 95020
Kellen McBain, owner of the Bella Viva Ristorante e Caffè, opened up the wine bar portion of the restaurant on January 30, 2013, much to the delight of an anxiously awaiting Gilroy.
Opening night drew an enthusiastic crowd, with a lot of laughter and people meeting people. There was a “Cheers” moment when I walked in the door: one of the patrons seated at the bar saw me come through the door, and shouted,
“Here comes another happy customer!”
and the entire place shouted “Welcome!” It looks like Kellen has attracted a great group of customers and is establishing a friendly, welcoming atmosphere from the very beginning.
You can see pictures of opening night, as well as pictures from the Rally Round Downtown Gilroy dinner (Click here for a description and slide show giving you a glimpse of this special evening) below.
“There is still work to be done before we can open the deli and the full-service restaurant,” Kellen explained, “but we felt it was time to open the doors. The rest will come as soon as we can make it happen.”
The plan is for a multi-purpose Italian food center, with a delicatessen, a wine/coffee bar, a small “marketplace” where basic foodstuffs, like olive oil and other ingredients, can be purchased, and a fine dining restaurant will all coexist under one roof. Opening the wine bar is just the first step of the process.
One of the key features of Bella Viva is the indoor/outdoor patio. Many of you have told Rally Round Downtown Gilroy that you want more outside seating. Well, Kellen has opened up the entire front of the Bella Viva so that diners will be seated in a comfortable patio environment with a roof over their heads. A fireplace at one end of the patio will help when the weather turns cool. A perfect place to sit with a glass of fine wine and watch the world go by.
This open front design is, interestingly, a return to the original design when this building, then known as the Steinmetz Building, functioned as a news and tobacco shop. (For a brief history of the Steinmetz building, read the brief article contributed by Carol DeSantis by clicking here.)
Click on a picture to see a larger version or a slide show.