This week’s Womply Merchant Spotlight is on Toscana Cafe. Located on Capitol Hill, this restaurant is known for its friendly, affordable, and casual atmosphere. Toscana Cafe is frequented often by those who live and work in the area. The generous portions, high quality food, and variety of options on the menu are just a few great things that this Italian restaurant has to offer.
Toscana Cafe’s tasty menu includes a selection of focaccia sandwiches such as the Napolitano (braised beef meatballs, tomato sauce, and provolone) and the Genovese (made with pulled roasted chicken, sundried tomatoes, and pesto). It also offers pizza by the slice and salads during the lunch hour.
In the evening, the menu gets even more impressive. Mouthwatering appetizers include Polipo (grilled octopus with sweet potato, celery, and fig salad with salsa verde), Stuffed Figs with Pancetta, and Saffron Risotto Balls served with smoked mozzarella and beef ragu. Toscana Cafe also serves many traditional pasta dishes such as Cannelloni, Pescatora made with black ink fettuccine, Ravioli with roasted eggplants, and many more.
In addition to its tasty menu, Toscana Cafe also hosts events that are open to the community. Toscana Cafe’s Chef Daniele Catalani teaches cooking classes so you can learn to make your favorite dishes right in the comfort of your own home. The restaurant also takes part in wine tastings, food and wine tours, and even Italian Language Lessons. To see the full list of its full events, click here.
Toscana Cafe was kind enough to take some time to answer some questions for the Womply Team. We spoke with Georgios, who is the owner of the restaurant, and are excited to share our conversation with you. We hope you enjoy reading about the history behind Toscana Cafe and the drive it takes to run a successful business!
Womply’s Interview with Toscana Cafe
What is your name and title?
Georgios Patsalides, Owner
When did you know that this was your dream and passion?
It all started when I was a teenager and worked in the industry during my summer breaks back in my home, Cyprus. After acquiring my B.Sc. in Hotel & Restaurant Management and gaining 15 years of experience, I came across a great opportunity to own a restaurant, which has always been my dream.
What inspired you to start a restaurant?
I worked in the industry for 15 years; my passion for the restaurant business led me to realize my dream and own my own place.
What is the best thing you’ve ever eaten?
I have to honestly say that I don’t have one favorite dish, but I love eating everything that is fresh, healthy and homemade.
What characteristics of the dish make it your favorite?
Mostly that it’s homemade, it makes all the difference.
What is your favorite night of the week here and why?
Friday is fun day! It’s always exciting to start the weekend with a busy, fun night at the restaurant.
Care to share a tip on how to run a successful restaurant with us?
I strongly believe the most important thing is to create a very positive, fun, competitive work environment for the employees. This is achieved by hiring employees with a great attitude, training them properly and treating them with respect. When this is done, they will in turn treat your guests with respect; once the guests are happy, your business will grow over time.
What was one of the most enjoyable experiences you’ve had with a customer?
It’s always great to hear first hand from guests how enjoyable their experience was, whether it’s a review online, on a comment card or in person; their constructive criticism also helps you to improve.