New Carytown Italian

Coffee shop swooner takes over a prized corner

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Claudio Ragazzi is well known to a certain fanatical customer base at his West End business Caffespresso, where Italian language and culture are as important as the food and beverages.

Now Ragazzi turns his attention to a new project, 10, his soccer jersey number and about to become an Italian cafe and wine bar in the former Carytown Bistro/Bin 22/Betsy's space at 26 S. Auburn.

It's a prime Carytown corner with a large deck and an intimate room with a view. "I'm a city guy," Ragazzi says. "I love watching people walk by, and having a glass of wine. I want 10 to be a place where people can have an experience that is unique and that they can enjoy and not spend too much money." He objects to big wine mark-ups and pledges to keep food portions fair and wine prices affordable.

Food at 10 will include paninis, cheese, snacks and pastries in a simple format with Northern Italian flavors.

The deck seats about 20 and will open for coffee and beverages by early May. Interior work may take a couple of months to complete before the cafe opens, he says. Ragazzi plans to show local art and feature live music in addition to the language classes and other programming that makes the 5 1/2 year old Caffespresso a hit with customers on Gaskins Road.

Bandazian & Hughes Inc. handled the transaction.

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