Office of Citizen
Rest in Peace,
Remember That Place
Submitted by Sudhir Kade on Sun, 06/01/2008 - 19:59.
On May 31, 2008 NEO bid a fond farewell to the University Circle dining instution for three decades, namely That Place on Bellflower. That Place, located specifically at 11401 Bellflower - has always carried a singular charm that has long permeated the historically significant Tudor-themed Coach house. The space has long been accented with contemporary overtones like eclectic sculptures and an impressive collection of Joseph Glasco abstracts. The unique layout of the eatery exposes entrants to the kitchen space immediately upon entry and opens into a lovely bar room featuring a gorgeous wine rack and strong Tudor accents. This room opens up to a lovely patio garden as well as an extension of the restaurant with additional seating and adjoining conference room. Staff response was uniformly one of somber acceptance reflecting upon the imminence of permanent closure - many confide that this was 'a long time coming' - 89 year old matriarch and owner of the establishment Isabella Basile has determined that the time was right to close permanently. She looks forward to enjoying retirement and the fruits of a still-significant set of real estate holdings throughout the UC area. The vibrancy and spirit cultivated by Isabella and Co will be missed by thousands of regulars who've frequented this Circle institution. Many of her loyal staff, including head Chef Tom Crane have remained with her and the restaurant for decades and will also be missed.
Throughout its lifetime, That Place has been rightly known for its food. Eclectic contemporary fare presented in hearty portions - it was only fitting that the eatery offered their signature dish, a Beef Wellington special to send off customers in style.
Future plans for the space are just now filtering in - rumor has it that the entrepreneurs behind trendy mainstays Table 45 and Parallax will be the next occupants and bring a more-upscale (and quite possibly more pretentious) establishment. I was saddened somewhat to learn an extensive financial investment would leave the space undistinguishable. Further disappointment followed news of a six month timeline for completion. The space adjoining the Barking Spider, Arabica, and other UC mainstays will now sit, silent and empty til winter, or beyond.
I remembered many lunches with faculty colleagues and a few rather poignant college dates during the early nineties that punctuated my visits spanning the three decades of Cleveland history. Good times, good food, good fun. That is how I'll (simply) remember That Place on Bellflower.