Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

First Look: Palazzo Restaurant, Now Open

Posted By on Thu, Jun 6, 2019 at 10:00 AM

click to enlarge palazzo_exterior.jpg
For the past 10 months, Rafael Zaloshnja has been laboring to bring back the old building that long housed Palazzo restaurant. Last week, he officially unveiled the space to the public as the Palazzo (10031 Detroit Ave., 216-417-7005), an upscale Italian eatery.

The Albanian-born, Europe-trained chef has been in Cleveland since he was 20 years old, working at places such as Heck’s, Beachcliff Tavern and Luca. He purchased the building last summer.

The unique structure on the border of the Edgewater and Cudell neighborhoods began life across the street as the Spaghetti Grill. The business was purchased in 1947 by Palmina DiFilippo and her daughter Theresa, who opened Palmina’s. At some point, the building was relocated across the street to make room for an RTA station. In 1993, Carla and Gilda Carnecelli, grandchildren of the original owner, reworked the building into the Italian restaurant Palazzo. That restaurant cruised along until about 2002, when it closed.

“I’m an Eastern European and I’ve always loved that construction, so one day I decided that I’m going to take a chance,” Zaloshnja explained.

On the roster are traditional Italian appetizers like antipasti platters, wine-steamed mussels, ricotta-stuffed artichokes and frutti de mare. There are a half dozen pastas, from gnocchi arrabiata and fusilli Bolognese to veal-stuffed tortellini in cream sauce. Pizzas, like a Margherita and one with sausage, prosciutto and ricotta, are baked in the original brick oven that came with the keys. Hearty meat-driven mains include grilled pork chops, osso bucco, veal saltimbocca and duck in orange sauce. Homemade desserts include gelato, cannoli and crème brulee.

“I’m third-generation and in my experience, if you do good food and good service, people, no matter where you are, will come support you,” says the chef. “They’re going to give you a chance, at least, and if you’re smart enough, you can keep them.”
click to enlarge palazzo4.jpg
click to enlarge palazzo6.png
click to enlarge palazzo4.jpg
click to enlarge palazzo2.jpg
click to enlarge palazzo5.jpg
click to enlarge palazzo3.jpg
Sign up for Scene's weekly newsletters to get the latest on Cleveland news, things to do and places to eat delivered right to your inbox.

Tags: , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of Palazzo, italian

Read the Digital Print Issue

January 5, 2022

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

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


© 2022 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation