New downtown restaurants' big risks pay off
Simone Del Rosario
Photo: Video by kgun9.com
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - From beer gardens to wine bars to world-famous pizza joints, more and more eateries are moving in downtown and it's proving to be a place they can thrive.
On Monday, Reilly Craft Pizza will open its brand-new beer garden. The restaurant opened a little more than a year ago, but they beat the first-year failure curse and are thriving -- even expanding.
"Surviving the first year is very, very difficult," manager Jay Zimmermann said. "We look at our neighbors and we see restaurants closing down; it's really an eye-opening experience and it makes us stay on top of our game."
Zimmermann said the beer garden will be unlike anywhere else in Tucson.
"Sitting outdoors; big long tables where you're sitting shoulder to shoulder with somebody you don't know, but you'll know them at the end of the night."
It seems everyone downtown is trying to find their niche. Restaurants are popping up all over, and Nine On Your Side met up with a group of investors hoping to open an English-style pub downtown.
"We think that kind of library, kind of dim, comfortable area might be a place that people like," Louie Christensen said.
Restaurant owners like Reilly's Tyler Fenton welcome the competition.
"With each restaurant that's opened, the pool of people coming downtown grows; the frequency of people coming downtown grows," Fenton said.
Fenton hopes his business will continue to grow with it.