The owners of Fabulous Freddies Italian Eatery, a Bridgeport Italian-American restaurant that’s been open since 1990 less than a mile west of Sox Park, have plans to open a sit-down restaurant. The Bertucci family is in the midst of converting its private events space above Freddies in preparation to open Tria Sorelle at 701 W. 31st Street on the second floor.
While Freddies is known for its pizza slices and Chicago-style breaded steak sandwich, Tria would serve slightly more upscale and traditional takes on Italian food with full service, according to Brittany Bertucci. The Bertuccis want to celebrate their Southern Italian heritage including fresh pastas. They said they area needed a breakfast and casual dining spot. They’ll serve LaVazza coffee.
This will be a 48-seat full-service restaurant with a bar. Weekend brunch is also planned; they still interviewing chefs. The signage went up earlier this week announcing an opening later this month, but the family may push the restaurant’s debut until the New Year. It’s a bit of a contrast compared to the counter service Freddies’ customers have enjoyed for 28 years.
The idea for Tria was teased last year at another location at 3300 S. Halsted Street. However, the Bertuccis determined the costs were too much to proceed with the project. A 2011 fire at Freddies closed the restaurant for eight months on 31st Street. The cost to reopen was steep. Ownership is hesitant to spend another large amount on the Halsted location after recovering from the fire at its original location.
Instead, they’ll try their new ideas out upstairs. Depending on how diners receive Tria on 31st Street, it may breathe life into the Halsted Street space. They’d like to turn the event space into a place for families to have a relaxed meal. They’re taking special care in ensuring the food’s affordable and that the space isn’t too fancy so it would intimidate their loyal clientele.
“Tria” is a made up word, kind of a feminine version of “trio,” said Brittany Bertucci. It refers to the three Bertucci sisters: Stephanie, Christie, and Brittany. The Bertuccis should have more to share later as they finalize their plans for the space.