New specialty food shop opens in downtown Grand Junction
WHAT: Bella Balsamic & The Pressed Olive
WHEN: Monday through Saturday; closed Sunday
WHERE: 555 Main St., Grand Junction
INFO: http://www.bellabalsamic.net, 970-581-6703
Oil and vinegar by nature don’t mix. Yet, when combined, both food elements merge to create astonishing tastes … and a successful business concept for newly transplanted Grand Junction residents — Jeremy and Rebecca Berlin.
The couple recently opened Bella Balsamic & The Pressed Olive at Grand Junction’s 555 Main St., which is connected to Brown’s Cycles and located next door to Main Street Bagels. It’s their second specialty food store opened in four years; the original location is found in Punta Gorda, Fla., just outside of Sarasota.
“We liked the synergy of bagels, bikes and the Avalon Theatre,” Jeremy said of their new location. “It’s the perfect mix.”
Chris Brown, owner of Brown’s Cycles, agreed with a grin: “Foodie stories in bike shops are awesome. It’s the same market — people who take care of their bodies.”
According to the Berlins, the shop offers 54 types of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegars, plus pastas, specialty cheeses and spices. Sampling is encouraged, and sampling parties (15-30 people) may even be hosted. The average price of a bottle of olive oil is $16.95, and a six-pack sampler costs $29.99. Free coffee and popcorn for customers is provided, too.
A SHARED PASSION
Originally from Grand Junction, Jeremy followed a career as a tennis pro around the world, all the while tasting gourmet foods. While traveling abroad he said he fell in love with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Meanwhile, Rebecca — an avid cook and former home economics teacher — fell in love with oil and vinegar for its healthful and tasty combination.
“I’m really passionate about nutrition and healthy eating,” she said. “ Everything we carry in our store is natural.”
The Berlins’ vision for their downtown shop includes outdoor seating and meal service as well — crepes for breakfast; salad (with dressings mixed from products in their shop); plus tapas, beer, wine and music in the evening. The couple is in the process of ironing out menu details and will announce additions to their store in the coming weeks.
“Once this gets rolling, it’s going to be pretty cool,” Jeremy added.
Current hours of operation are Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Hours will be extended as meal service is added to the mix.
For more information about products offered, visit http://www.bellabalsamic.net or call the Grand Junction shop directly at 970-581-6703.
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