New restaurant venture to offer upmarket Italian hospitality

A restaurateur is bringing “the most ambitious concept of my career” to the West Street area of Sheffield’s city centre.

The two-storey Grappa venue – poised to open in the former Sinclairs building on Glossop Road in late autumn – aims to set the standard for quality Italian bar/dining in Sheffield.

Venue founder, Steve Zsirai, landed his first restaurant management job at K-Pasa back in the late 1990s.

He previously worked at the Flying Pizza and was the brains behind the Tequila Bar, which continues to draw crowds on West Street.

One of his most popular ventures was Viva Tequila, in the Gleadless area of Sheffield. He has also run Giorgio’s in Chesterfield for the past 10 years.

Zsirai said: “If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my 30-plus years in the trade it’s the importance of providing customers with that ‘holiday feeling’ and a sense of escapism. I always treat my staff like my extended family – and I believe that same feeling should be passed onto our customers.”

Central to the DNA of Grappa will be the Italian liqueur of the same name. The restaurant and bar already has direct links with the Italian home of the drink, as the country’s oldest and most renowned distillery supplied Zsirai with his very first bottles.

The venue is aiming to become the UK’s official capital of grappa. Zsirai said: “We’ll have more varieties and more opportunities to celebrate my home nation’s official liqueur than anywhere else in the UK.”

Authentic flavours and dishes from across Italy will dominate the menu. A rustic-style downstairs bar area will be complemented by a more luxurious upstairs, 80-seater restaurant.