CHESHIRE — A catering group that’s operated quietly in a portion of the former Cugino’s Pizza building on Highland Avenue for the past three years plans to offer prepared foods in the front part of the former restaurant.
Riverhouse Hospitality runs The Riverhouse at Goodspeed Station in Haddam and The Society Room of Hartford and also provides catering at locations such as the New Britain Museum of American Art.
Trevor Furrer, a managing partner of Riverhouse Hospitality, said the 1410 Highland Ave. building was a central location for preparing food for the company’s catering business. Since the company is already making food in the kitchen, Furrer said it was natural to expand into the front portion of the building and offer prepared foods to the public.
Ready-made quality meals are more and more in demand, according to Furrer. The planned location, called Perfectly Prepared Gourmet to Go, will offer all sorts of meals that can be heated up at home or at the office.
“It’s more of a place to go and get quality meals, everything from sauces to entrees to side dishes,” he said.
While there will be a few tables and chairs, the main focus will be on grab-and-go business.
Riverhouse Hospitality didn’t have a sign for its catering services for the past three years. Furrer saw no need since the location was only used to prepare food for delivery to other venues. More recently, the company has put up signs hinting at the coming service.
Crews are working to renovate the front of the building and Furrer hopes to open by the end of August.
Jerry Sitko, the town’s economic development coordinator, said he encouraged Riverhouse Hospitality to offer seating at the planned location. He was glad to see them expand both their footprint and their services.
“The more offerings up at that end of town, the better,” Sitko said.
Riverhouse Hospitality leases the building from owner Frank Maturo. Richard Chevrolet across the street had parked vehicles at the property but has moved them back with the expansion of Riverhouse.