Team Behind Giovanni's and Smokin Q's to Open Mexican Restaurant at Van Aken District, Butcher Shop in Mayfield

click to enlarge Look for Paloma to open at Van Aken mid to late 2022. - Alyssa Ladner
Alyssa Ladner
Look for Paloma to open at Van Aken mid to late 2022.

One of the last remaining marquee restaurant spaces at Van Aken District has been claimed. The 4,400-square-foot property, which is adjacent to Kindred Spirit, will become Paloma, a Mexican concept from the team behind Giovanni’s and Smokin’ Q’s BBQ. The restaurant is expected to make its debut in late spring or early summer 2022.

click to enlarge Zack Ladner (left) with Carl Quagliata. - Courtesy Zack Ladner
Courtesy Zack Ladner
Zack Ladner (left) with Carl Quagliata.
Zachary Ladner and Carl Quagliata are currently in the design phase of the project. Ladner describes the restaurant as a taco-focused Mexican restaurant that will look and feel a little more polished than what’s currently blanketing the marketplace.

“It’s a casual restaurant, but we don’t want it to feel like certain other popular taco restaurants in the area,” he explains. “We want it to be a little bit less casual.”

The main draw will be the tacos, Ladner adds, but the menu will feature Latin-themed appetizers, mains and desserts as well. If you’ve dined at the four-year-old Smokin’ Q’s in Mayfield, you’ll have a good idea of what to expect at Paloma.

“We do a lot of tacos at Smokin’ Q’s,” Ladner says. “We’re doing house-made corn tortillas. You have to do that; that’s a thing for me. I get irritated when there aren’t house-made tortillas.”

The tortillas that will make an appearance at Paloma likely will be similar to those served at Smokin’ Q’s, which are a corn/flour hybrid that provides the flavor and aroma of corn but with the texture of flour.

Of course, there will be a top-flight beverage program starring various renditions of the Paloma, the popular tequila-based cocktail.

Paloma isn’t the only project in the works for Ladner and Quagliata. Before that restaurant opens its doors the team will open The Village Butcher and Salumeria in Mayfield Village, not far from Smokin’ Q’s. The 1,700-square-foot shop is going into the former Happy Healthy Dogs space at 818 SOM Center Rd.

Ladner describes the concept as an artisan butcher shop with a dry-aging chamber that will turn out salumi products. The Village Butcher will stock fresh-cut steaks and chops, but also deli meats, cheeses and imported Italian foodstuffs. Pasta will be made in plain view and sold frozen for home cooking. Shoppers also will be able to order sandwiches and other prepared foods.

Look for the Village Butcher top open around Christmastime.
Like this story?
SCENE Supporters make it possible to tell the Cleveland stories you won’t find elsewhere.
Become a supporter today.

Douglas Trattner

For 20 years, Douglas Trattner has worked as a full-time freelance writer, editor and author. His work on Michael Symon's "Carnivore," "5 in 5" and “Fix it With Food” have earned him three New York Times Best-Selling Author honors, while his longstanding role as Scene dining editor garnered the award of “Best...
Scroll to read more Food News articles

Join Cleveland Scene Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.