Casa Mia

Perhaps you, like I, have been wondering what Casa Mia, the new place on Queen Street next to Woolworths, will turn out to be once the wrapping comes off. There are some hints in their public trade name registration: “Coffee shop, etc., ice cream.” Anyone else have more intel?

Casa Mia

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DerekMac's picture
DerekMac on June 13, 2007 - 22:39

The door was open a couple of weeks ago, so I stopped in. The owner, who appears and sounds authentically Italian, showed me around. He plans a real Italizn coffee bar, plus, as you can see on the recently-installed window sign, Laura Secord chocolates and ice cream (never could figure out how that lady with the cow got into the ice cream business). The decor was quite classy, with nice tables and chairs and an impressive looking coffee bar. I asked him about food, and he told me “light meals only”, which I assume means somewhere along the lines of Caf

Kevin's picture
Kevin on June 14, 2007 - 18:26

Any connection with the original Charlottetown Casa Mia?

DerekMac's picture
DerekMac on June 15, 2007 - 12:51

I doubt he is even aware that the original Casa Mia existed. I expect it is a very popular Italian restaurant name. A Google search for +casa +mia +restaurant came up with 731,000 entries…

For those who don’t remember, Casa Mia was a fairly classy Italian restaurant in the 1980’s in the Prince St. building now occupied by the Formosa Tea House. I believe the bar upstairs was called Lorenzo’s Loft. The new Casa will be more coffee shop and less restaurant than its predecessor.
I also remember Pat’s Pizza and, a very long time ago, the Windmill Restaurant occupying the Prince Street location.

Rob MacD's picture
Rob MacD on June 15, 2007 - 14:38

If I’m not mistaken, the Prince St. location of Casa Mia was actually its second (and final) location. Wasn’t Casa Mia originally located in the University Plaza strip mall, next to where Colour Your World now exists? I know there was an Italian restaurant there, but I’m not 100% sure it was called Casa Mia.
Anyone confirm or refute that?

andrea's picture
andrea on June 15, 2007 - 16:15

I remember the Windmill. Then it was Vito’s Pizza in the early 80s before it was Casa Mia/Lorenzo’s Loft.

Rob, I forgot about that Italian restaurant at University Plaza until now. I don’t think it was called Casa Mia because I think they were both around at the same time — if you can believe that Charlottetown supported two Italian restaurants at once — though I can’t remember the name of it.

Lola's picture
Lola on June 15, 2007 - 17:29

The restaurant at University Plaza was called Caesar’s Italy. They served a mean spumoni.

andrea's picture
andrea on June 15, 2007 - 18:02

That’s it! Thanks, lola — I think you and I may even have been there together. I wonder when it closed? They probably couldn’t keep up with the quality dining offered by The Lonestar.

DerekMac's picture
DerekMac on June 15, 2007 - 18:39

Caesar’s Italy was owned by Joy and Ray Hanley, who also owned Little Christo’s (originally called Little Caesar’s, but changed due to threat of lawsuit from big American chain of same name) at 411 University Avenue, and, eventually, the Little Christo’s frozen pizza factory in Desable, which ultimately resulted in the demise of their pizza empire. Caesar’s Italy was opened after Little Christo’s, but closed first — I think it was hard to make ends meet, particularly with two Italian restaurants of similar calibre in town.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on June 15, 2007 - 18:56

During the brief time in the sun when Little Christo’s was available in our grocer’s pizza case, they made an awesome single-slice frozen whole wheat pizza. Eating at the restaurant on University Ave. was great too, and we always used them for home delivery. I was really sad to see the empire collapse.

Ann's picture
Ann on June 16, 2007 - 20:25

When it was Little Caesar’s, it was also owned by a woman called Wndy something.
In fact, I think it was she who started it.

Kevin's picture
Kevin on June 17, 2007 - 20:00

I’m certain the best thing about Lttle Christo’s on University Avenue was Beryl but the pizza was a close second.

Beryl's picture
Beryl on June 18, 2007 - 19:02

Although I have been a ruk.ca stalker for a long time, I have never posted a comment before.
Thank-you Kevin for that lovely compliment…
As a lot of people know I witnessed the growth and demise of the Little Christo’s/Ceasar’s Italy empire first hand. It makes me sad to think of all those years of hard work and passion on so many people’s part, go down the tubes. It does though warm my heart to hear people speak of them with such fond memories.
Just a couple of clarifications…
Little Christo’s opened first, then Ceasar’s Italy. Then Little Christo’s Cafe/Duffy’s opened on lower Queen. Ceasar’s & Duffy’s were sold off to finance the Little Christo’s Pizza Factory. Ceasar’s was sold to Wendy Kelly who ran it for several years after.
One of the things that made the businesses so successful was the staff. Many have moved on to great careers here in the city and I’m so please to see that.
Thanks for reminding me of the good memories.

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