Beverly Road Shuffle

a restaurant space in the middle of a renovation, the space is in disarray
Plans for the former io Deli are to combine its space at 306 Beverly with its neighbor at 308, for a new restaurant called Iovino’s.

storefront shuffle is underway on Beverly Road, involving Café io, io Deli, The Blooming Dahlia and Panaderia Jazmin. By late summer, the Beverly Road business district will look a little different.

The idea started with conversations among the three business owners. The Blooming Dahlia wanted to downsize, Panaderia Jazmin wanted to upsize and Jeff and Carol Iovino wanted to go bigger and better by creating one large restaurant in a building they own, instead of maintaining two separate locations. So the owners all got together and came up with a plan. “It’s just a different version of us,” Jeff  pointed out.

Café io and io Deli

Work is already underway on io Deli, 306 Beverly Road, which closed on April 26. “The deli was a perfect example of what doesn’t work anymore post-pandemic. It was a menu with 45 items. The price point was as low as we could go. You kind of always hope that volume would fix that. Well, that doesn’t work anymore,” Jeff said.

The Iovinos hope their new restaurant, spanning 306 and 308 Beverly Road, will offer a West Village vibe and a more mature version of what they’ve been doing at Café io, with 95 seats instead of 45, and a 13- to 15-seat bar. The newly expanded restaurant will be called Iovino’s. “There’s value in the brand name at this point and there’s a commitment and expectation in terms of what we have to offer,” said Carol.

The Iovinos hope to open the new restaurant in early September, with as little downtime as possible, while still retaining current staff.

“We’re going to grow up a bit and be just a better version of what we were doing—a version that can compete in today’s restaurant world,” said Jeff.

Reenie Kuhlman is a neighbor who dines on Beverly Road multiple times a week.  “I’m excited to see where Chef Jeff takes this. I think it’s somewhere I would like to hang out,” she said.

A small bakery with cookies and doughnuts displayed
Panaderia Jazmin will expand into space currently occupied by Café io.

The Blooming Dahlia

To make room for Iovino’s, The Blooming Dahlia, 308 Beverly Road, will move into the space currently occupied by Panaderia Jazmin, 300 Beverly Road, Suite A, something floral shop owner Melissa Sacco Pruitt has been wanting to do for years. “I don’t do large events anymore, so it would be more like a studio. I will have some retail, but not as much. I’m just cutting my space in half,” she said. Until her new location is ready sometime in August, she is working out of her house. Customers can still call the store phone number, (412) 571-0752, to place orders.

The storefront of Cafe IO on beverly road
Cafe Io will become Panaderia Jazmin

Panaderia Jazmin

In the next piece of the puzzle, Panaderia Jazmin will expand into Café io’s current location, 300 Beverly Road. Owners Jose Flores and Jazmin Hernandez are grateful for the opportunity to expand, something that’s been a dream of theirs. They needed a bigger space for their authentic Mexican bakery, but also wanted to stay in the Beverly Road area.

“When Jeff (Iovino) asked if we wanted the opportunity, I said yes! I don’t think two times,” Flores said with a smile. In addition to offering traditional made-from-scratch Mexican breads and pastries, the new Panaderia Jazmin will also offer coffee and authentic Mexican breakfast and brunch. “Where tradition meets taste” will become the new slogan. “We’re happy to offer delicious products and exceptional service,” Hernandez said.

Panaderia Jazmin’s last day in its current location will be July 31 so The Blooming Dahlia can start moving in on August 1 and the storefront shuffle can get underway in earnest.

Photos by Ken Lager