Friday November 26, 2010

GREAT BARRINGTON -- Two brothers who grew up in the Berkshires are preparing to open an Italian restaurant early next year at the site of the former Pearl's Restaurant.

Alexander and Matthew Feldman have signed a lease agreement for the prominent space atop Railroad Street, and have purchased all of the assets that remain from Pearl's. The brothers plan to have the space open by February or March, offering authentic Northern Italian cuisine.

The restaurant will be called Fiori, a family name of the Feldmans, who grew up off-and-on in West Stockbridge.

"We love the Berkshires. This is where we consider our home," said Alexander, who recently relocated from Colorado with his brother.

Alexander, 30, will run the back of the house, and said the food they will be offering "can't, pretty much, be found outside of Italy. We're bringing a unique experience to Great Barrington."

Alexander said all the food will be made in-house, and will feature local and seasonal products.

The Feldmans' father was a musician for the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Alexander first got into cooking as a teenager serving muffins to the musicians during breaks from rehearsals. After working at a number of local restaurants, he went on to work with some of the biggest culinary names in Boston, New York City and Italy.

Most recently, Alexander worked at several restaurants in Colorado, including a space in Boulder along side Matthew.

Matthew, 28, who attended Johnson and Wales in Providence, R.I., will run the front of the house and said changes to the interior will be minimal.

"We're going to freshen it up, make it look new," said Matthew.

The Feldmans declined to say how much they purchased the assets for, or how much any potential renovations, including installing a new wood fire grill, will cost.

The brothers have wanted to open a restaurant in the Berkshires for several years, but moved back from Colorado because of this opportunity.

"This space is really what brought us back at this time," said Matthew.

The restaurant has been dormant for more than a year. The space was set to be purchased by Jonathan VanAllen, then owner of Jonathan's Bistro in Lenox, before he died in a car accident in August 2009.

To reach Trevor Jones:
tjones@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 528-3660.