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Vito's is opening a takeout location in east Saint John. Image: Facebook/Vito's

Vito’s plans takeout location in east Saint John

By Brad Perry Jan 29, 2024 | 6:33 AM

A family-owned Saint John restaurant is returning to the city’s east side.

Vito’s plans to open a takeout location in the former Pizza Studio at East Point.

The news comes just over two years after Vito’s closed its Rothesay Avenue restaurant.

Co-owner George Georgoudis said COVID gave them an opportunity to rethink their business model.

“We’re not sure if three full-service Vito’s restaurants for the size of the market is appropriate,” Georgoudis said in an interview.

Georgoudis said when they closed the east side restaurant on Jan. 1, 2022, it was always their plan to return in some capacity.

“We’ve always had a deep-rooted customer base in east Saint John. A lot of them were coming to Rothesay, a lot of them were going uptown, but we know that long-term, we need to have a location in east Saint John,” said the co-owner.

“One of the biggest reasons why we took this location is that we also realize that drive-thru pickup is one of our strengths and is the future for our business.”

That will give customers the option to call ahead or go online to place their order, and then drive up to the drive-thru window to pick it up.

Georgoudis said the takeout location will feature at least 60 to 70 per cent of the menu from their full-service restaurants, along with some new options.

“We’re definitely keeping the staples that people recognize. Our pizzas, our pastas, our chicken parms, caesar chicken souvlaki,” he said.

“We’re also looking at a grab-and-go section too. Some dressings, some sauces already made, u-bake products.”

Vito’s plans to open the takeout location in the second half of February. In terms of staff numbers, Georgoudis said they will employ around 15 people to start.

“Takeout is very labour intensive. We’re still using our cooking techniques, the same equipment that we’re using at our other two restaurants.”