Former Italian restaurant owner takes over Greek eatery in Steveston

Former Paesano's owner Satinder Jaswal will re-open George's Taverna on Moncton Street

A new, old favourite is making a comeback in Steveston and it’s all thanks to complete and utter boredom.

Almost two years after selling up and shipping out of Italian restaurant Paesano’s on Bayview Street to take his first summer vacation in half a century, Satinder Jaswal got fed up with retirement.

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This time Jaswal, 64, has taken over George’s Taverna on the corner of Moncton Street and First Avenue.

And in a script that you couldn’t make up, the former Italian restaurant owner, who is of East Indian ethnicity, is set to re-open the Greek eatery sometime next month.

However, it won’t be a fusion of Italian, Greek and East Indian cuisine – it will be straight up Italiano, according to Jaswal, and will be called Cucina Piccolo, meaning “little kitchen.”

“I left almost two years ago and took some time off, did a bit of travelling. But I got really bored of all of that very quickly. It was just so boring,” Jaswal told the Richmond News.

“I really missed working and working with people especially. Now word has gotten out and people are calling me up asking for tables and I’m not even open yet.

“I do have an extended contact list and people from all over have been reaching out.”

Don’t start lining up just yet, though, as Jaswal said the former tavern, which was popular in its day, was in “pretty bad shape” when he took the keys a few weeks ago.

“I still need another month or so here; this place was a mess,” he added.

“We had to gut the entire place; I don’t know how people managed to eat in here.”

Despite edging closer every day to official retirement age, Jaswal, who until recently had spent 36 years serving up Italian food in Richmond, said he still feels up for the challenge of running his own restaurant again.

“I feel good and I feel healthy. I’m not into sitting at home doing nothing.

“This place is going to be an Italian through and through. But I can’t use the Paesano’s name, I gave that up with the last place (now Britannia Brewing).

“This will be a fresh start. I’m hoping to get open by the end of April.”

In May 2016, Jaswal told the News, “I want to retire, basically. It’s a lot of work and I just want to take it easy now.”

When he announced back then he was closing, Jaswal said he was bombarded with calls from loyal customers, asking where he’s going to open up next.

“You never know where we might pop back up,” he said at the time.

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