A collaboration among four entities will bring to fruition a new Italian restaurant in downtown Port Chester on or about Feb. 1.



Those four entities are Mayor Neil Pagano, who owns the building, the former location of Per Voi at 23 North Main St.; Trustee Sam Terenzi; Dom Neri, president of Neri's Bakery Products; and the owners of Spadaro Ristorante in New Rochelle.



"I was sitting with Dom about two months ago and we were having coffee in front of T&J's," said Terenzi last month. "I said I understand Per Voi is up for sale." They were interested but said: "What do we know about running a restaurant?"



Neri said he had been going to a restaurant in New Rochelle for a few years and the owners wanted to do something in Port Chester. That's when the spark was kindled that eventually became a full-blown plan complete with a pizza oven ordered from Italy.



"We laid out a plan," said Terenzi. "They would come in, take their model of Italian almost family style and Dom would be the major investor and I would be involved because I put the deal together."



According to the blog New Rochelle Now, Spadaro Ristorante is owned by two sisters who had a restaurant in Rome before opening their 40-seat eatery in a non-descript strip mall in New Rochelle. There is no menu but, according to New Rochelle Now, "the food is fit for Fellini."



"They'll run the show," said Terenzi. "It's a family-run operation and they have a great reputation."



Per Voi closed on Labor Day and manager Joe Fornino was actively marketing it last summer, said Terenzi. Copacabana down the block was interested, but when that deal fell through, this one came together.



"Joe's happy and Neil's happy and all's well that ends well," said Terenzi.



The entire rear façade of the building along Abendroth Avenue is currently being transformed to give it a modern new look and create a deck along the length of the building. Work began in September and was expected to take 3-4 months.



The completion date was delayed 3½ weeks, said Pagano, after workers from Allied/CMS, Inc. encountered an underground oil tank which had to be removed along with two 20-yard containers of contaminated soil. It is now expected to be finished by the latter part of January at the latest.



"They have to wait for the deck to be finished," said Terenzi, who is excited about the new venture.



"I'm going to be the accountant and promote the place," he said, as he did at the Village Inn on Westchester Avenue before it became T&J Villaggio Trattoria, which is also changing hands later this month. "I'll keep an eye on things but will not have a major investment in the place." He's also involved in planning the restaurant's website, expected to also be called Spadaro.



Besides the long, narrow space running between North Main Street and Abendroth Avenue that was previously occupied by Per Voi, Spadaro will take over the vacant store next door to add another 1300 square feet which will allow for expansion of the bar, installation of the wood-burning oven and creation of a private room for 40.



"We filed the plans today," said Terenzi on Dec. 16. "The beauty of taking the other space is we'll have complete access to the patio in the summer."