Owner of Paolo’s Restaurant, Paolo Duraj
“For me, I love Italian food, there is so much variety, so many great flavours. It is what I was brought up on and now I can share this fine cuisine with others…”
Originally born in Albania, I moved to Italy, Rome, aged 14 years old and spent most of my childhood around Italian food. My parents were great cooks and spent time preparing fresh, tasty, meals.
Aged 17, I moved to Bolzano, a city in North Italy and became friends with my good friend Pino. Pino helped run the family restaurant and this is where I watched my friend and his father go about their business and thought, one day I would love to run my own little Italian restaurant.
I spent a great deal of time in Pino’s restaurant, sometimes lending a helping hand, and also frequented other restaurants in the area, watching and learning. I worked in various manual jobs and saved so that one day I could open my own business.
Over the years, I’ve developed my knowledge of Italian cooking and I’m a great believer in doing things the traditional way to capture true Italian flavours. This is why we order some ingredients such as flour, olive oil, pasta, tomatoes, and supplies such as coffee and wine, from Italian suppliers who deliver goods from Italy to the UK.
You may be aware that the restaurant was previously known as ‘Refreshers pub’ and we’ve worked hard changing it to Paolo’s Restaurant, a place visited by those who share a love of well prepared Italian food and good wine. When not cooking I love to spend time with the family and watch the F1 – go Ferrari!
I’m always happy to chat about Italian food and how the dishes on the menu are prepared.