Every day is a celebration at VIA Italian Table, but Thursday, April 13th, will mark a special achievement as the restaurant observes its 10th anniversary. Owners, Robb and Madeleine Ahlquist opened VIA with one particular goal in mind: to capture all of the experiences and memories they shared together in Italy. A decade later, VIA is still inviting guests to enjoy authentic Italian cuisine among friends on Shrewsbury Street in Worcester.
In its history, VIA has been granted countless titles, ranging from Worcester’s Best Restaurant to Worcester’s Most Romantic Restaurant, but it should be acknowledged that ten years of success in the restaurant industry is an accolade in and of itself. VIA has done more than just survive in an industry where 80% or restaurants fail in their first five years, it has continued to thrive as a contemporary Italian kitchen. Armed with a chef-driven philosophy and a pool of culinary talent, VIA will undoubtedly tower as a Shrewsbury Street institution for decades to come.
Each of the Worcester Restaurant Group’s establishments are intentionally very distinctive. General Manager, Keith Carolan says, “I think being the youngest of three, VIA has worn that moniker with a badge of honor. We relish being the youngest and I think the vibe and makeup of the restaurant really shows that.” Carolan thinks of One Eleven Chophouse and The Sole Proprietor as beloved older siblings. As the youngest, VIA is proud to provide customers with a more lively and energetic atmosphere.
Many of VIA’s staff members have been part of the team from the beginning. Assistant General Manager, Brad Leveillee, began his career as a server and has grown alongside VIA as a valued leader. Kevin Clancey has also been a server from the start and continues to offer his invaluable veteran presence. The same can be said of Bar Manager, Jon Odgren, who started as a barback and has never failed to lead by example. Ednelio Flores, Wilfredo Rios and Viveca Neyra are valued as the backbone of the restaurant. They show up each morning in the dark to prep everything for the day of service. Carolan notes, “They are the model of consistency.”
VIA takes great joy in serving as a destination for Worcester’s families who have chosen to celebrate major milestones at 89 Shrewsbury Street for ten years. On April 13th, customers will receive 10% off the purchase of their lunch entree (before 4:00 pm) or dinner entree. Customers can also take part in Wine 101, a class hosted by Ciro Perone of Horizon Beverage. The course will consist of tasting ten select wines from Italy with “small bites” pairings, and will be open to the first forty students who sign up. A gift card will be raffled off at the end of the evening. Guests can enter by making a reservation for April 13th.