The Commons Kitchen opening in Downtown Ithaca next month

Family style restaurant will serve home cooked meals, fresh soups, baked goods, and more

ITHACA, MARCH 6, 2018 — Downtown Ithaca’s Commons, home to many excellent fine dining and fast food options, will soon have a family style restaurant added to its mix.

Nadina Azzouay, a longtime home-cooker and the wife of Casablanca Pizzeria owner Adil Griguihi, is opening her own business, The Commons Kitchen at 124 East State St. (The Commons), the former Due Amici Ristorante site.

“We are delighted to welcome Nadina Azzouay, The Commons Kitchen, and its specialty dishes to our thriving community. The family style and ethnic dining experience that The Commons Kitchen will provide is going to be a wonderful addition to our diverse restaurant scene. We wish Nadina and the business great success,” says Gary Ferguson, executive director for the Downtown Ithaca Alliance (DIA), a not-for-profit organization that represents and promotes downtown’s businesses.

The new Mediterranean dining hotspot plans to open on Sunday, April 1.

“With all of the development and growth that is now happening on The Commons, this is the perfect time to open this restaurant here…We’re going to do well because we’re going to serve delicious meals that are unlike any other that you’ll find downtown,” says Azzouay.

At The Commons Kitchen, guests will have their choice of breakfast staples such as omelets and pancakes, daily homemade soup and sandwich lunch specials, Chicago style pizza, and a variety of dinner choices including vegan and gluten-free dishes. Freshly prepared baked goods including many types of bread, cupcakes, and muffins will also be available.

“It seems many people are often too busy to cook healthy, home-cooked meals. When they eat here, they’ll receive a homemade meal that is prepared using fresh ingredients, no canned foods. The meals will be very healthy and complete meals offered very affordable prices,” says Azzouay.

Customized meals will also be available upon request.

“If someone has dietary restrictions or a specialty diet, we’ll create a meal that suits them. We want to make sure that everyone can enjoy eating a meal here,” says Azzouay.

Commons Kitchen will be open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Dine-in, take-out, delivery, and catering services will be available. Also, Commons Kitchen will be available to rent for private parties.

For additional details about The Commons Kitchen, call the restaurant at (607) 339-0790 or (607) 339-0622.

The Commons Kitchen is one of many new businesses to join the downtown community in recent months. Odyssey Wellness and Sweet Melissa’s Ice Cream Shop also recently opened in the area. The DIA and City Mayor Svante Myrick will welcome them with a ribbon cutting ceremony at each of the businesses on March 29. The celebrations will start at 2 p.m. at Odyssey Wellness located in the Dewitt Mall followed by a ceremony at Sweet Melissa’s in Press Bay Alley.

Sweet Melissa’s is also hosting its own special grand opening event on March 31. More details about that activity can be found on the DIA’s Facebook Events Page or on Sweet Melissa’s Facebook Page.

For more information about any of these businesses, contact the DIA at (607) 277-8679 or email