By adding great food to the outstanding ambience, Luca Italian Cuisine makes the Superior Viaduct...
Finally. Cleveland's skyline has been waiting for a restaurant like Luca Italian Cuisine — a place with the food and service to match the city's classic architecture and rustic good looks.
In the space formerly occupied by Ponte Vecchio and Viaduct Lounge, the 10-month-old Luca inhabits the top floor of a building that reaches five stories below the old Superior Viaduct. So, yes, it has some advantages: large windows frame the purple-hued bridges, colorful luminescence of the Terminal Tower and a twinkling skyline close enough to hold in two hands.
That's what Luca and Lola Sema saw when they ate at Ponte Vecchio the first week it opened back in 2004. "I remember thinking, Wow, what a beautiful spot," says Luca.
After Ponte Vecchio closed in 2011, followed by the short-lived Viaduct Lounge, the place became theirs. Luca serves as chef and Lola as hostess, general manager and resident wine expert. "This is a dream come true for us," he admits, "something we've wanted for a long time."
The Semas spent 2 1/2 months refurbishing the dining room, keeping the original exposed brick walls, pink-hued granite tabletops and bar but adding new lighting, reupholstered booths, large works of art and refreshed woodwork.
Yet, the surroundings, as lush as they are, serve merely as the delicious first course.