Dalla Baia opens its doors as a new generation Italian restaurant in Poulsbo
POULSBO – That’s-A-Some Italian Ristorante had been a part of downtown Poulsbo’s restaurant scene for over three decades. The owner group behind Dalla Baia, its successor, is already aiming for a similar time horizon.
The owners of the new Italian bistro have spoken of the long game, said Sandy Kolbeins, who is part of this group alongside husband-wife couple Cecilio and Grisel Topete.
“You think of this place, when you walked in and it looked straight out of the 80s…it would be an honor to be in that place as well,” Kolbeins said.
Former owners Tom and Marie Pelland moved away from That’s-A-Some last year, and Dalla Baia – Italian for “near the bay” – opened last month after extensive renovations to the old location, which is a short walk from Liberty Bay just off Front Street.
Longtime customers of the Dalla Baia’s predecessor will be struck by the changes as soon as they walk through the front door. The restaurant has new decor and fresh paint. A wall fell and the seats were rearranged. Visitors can peek into an open kitchen to see employees moving around as dishes are prepared.
Signs around the restaurant painted by Poulsbo civic promoter Bill Austen nod to the community’s history and its downtown institutions.
“I really believe in Poulsbo,” Kolbeins said, “and it’s about saying, ‘As we grow, let’s remember where we came from. “”
Cecilio Topete said he sees the place as a place where people can come after work, have a drink or order pizza while enjoying the view of the water. “I hope it will be that place where everyone wants to be,” he said.
After: ‘Just like home’: Poulsbo’s That’s-A-Some Italian closes after three decades
Even with the changes, Kolbeins said, staff have remained through the transition and the restaurant will seek to continue to win business from those who were regulars at That’s-A-Some.
“We try to be really nice, but we don’t want to take ourselves too seriously,” Kolbeins said. “We have boaters here, come in shorts and flip flops, come as you are, bring your kids, be a family, make some noise. The concept is “Welcome to our kitchen”. We have a really open kitchen idea where there is a lot going on and a lot of things that you are going to see.
The menu features many Italian dishes like spaghetti and meatballs, gnocchi and fettuccine alfredo, pizza, and seafood options like salmon penne and clam linguine.
“We focus on, ‘You might be able to do it at home, but it’ll take you all day,'” Kolbeins said. “We like to call it honest food.”
For more information about visiting the restaurant facebook.com/Dalla-Baia-115395761150888.
Nathan Pilling is a reporter covering Bainbridge Island, North Kitsap and Washington State Ferries for the Kitsap Sun. He can be reached at 360-792-5242, [email protected] or on Twitter at @KSNatePilling.
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