Just try and keep up with Tony Rutigliano, long-time Downtown Arlington advocate and newly-minted entrepreneur.
It’s almost easy to forget that Urban Alchemy Coffee + Wine Bar, Tony’s new business venture, hasn’t been around for ages. Even before opening the doors at 403 E. Main Street in Downtown, Tony has already launched an original Urban Alchemy line of coffee blends, sponsored and catered multiple events around town, participated in Taste of Arlington, and is giving back to the community in partnership with the Arlington ISD Education Foundation. He’s also built some impressive brand loyalty through social media and a regular e-newsletter.
Only one thing left to do, right Tony?
Downtown Arlington: When is Urban Alchemy’s storefront officially opening for business?
Tony Rutigliano: Now that it’s after the first of the year, we’ll be open soon. Stay tuned for an announcement in our e-newsletter “Start to Finish” and social media! We’ll begin with abbreviated hours, generally 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. every day but Sunday. We’ll be closed on Sundays to give our employees an opportunity to worship and spend time with family and friends. In the future, I expect we’ll be open until midnight on Friday and Saturday.
DA: Will you have a grand opening event and if so, when?
TR: Yes, we’ll have an official grand opening later this Spring.
DA: What’s your favorite architectural or design feature within Urban Alchemy (formerly Lester’s Automotive)?
TR: The windows are amazing. They really transform the building completely, and provide beautiful light inside. When the windows were installed, it felt like we had turned a corner and the building was taking on a new identity and beginning a new chapter.
DA: What can we expect to see on your winter menu?
TR: We’ve developed a very simple but delicious menu of sandwiches, salads, pastries, desserts and charcuterie. I think people will be surprised by the quality and creativity of the recipes we’ve put together.
DA: Is there a certain wine or coffee pairing that you’re really loving right now?
It’s really been fun to try so many different wines as we’ve worked to build the wine list, but it’s incredibly difficult to pick a favorite. The wines we’ve selected represent impressive regions from around the world, sure to please both the novice and the most discerning palette.
DA: You’ve described Urban Alchemy as a second living room. What does that mean to you?
TR: It means a place where you feel at home, where people gather with friends and family to celebrate or unwind after a long day. A special place in the heart of the community.
DA: The Arlington ISD Education Foundation is your first philanthropic partner, which you chose and announced months before opening UA’s doors. Talk about why having a philanthropic partner is so important to you and the business.
TR: It’s very important to me that our business gives back and that we contribute to the well-being of the Arlington community. It’s up to us all, businesses and residents alike, to share our talents and resources to strengthen the foundation of our city.
DA: Was/is there anyone in your life who has helped you realize your dream of becoming an entrepreneur?
TR: There are several individuals that I am blessed to know who have been tremendously helpful to me. I’m grateful they’re willing to share what they’ve learned as well as their time and talents to help me realize my dream. I am deeply indebted to them. Hopefully, one day I’ll be able to pay it forward.
DA: If 2018 Tony today could give 2016 Tony a word of advice, what would it be?
TR: Just do it! But plan for it to take longer and cost more than you think.
DA: Do you have any New Year’s resolutions?
TR: I’m not sure, but they will emphasize more time with God, family and me.
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About Downtown Arlington
An official State of Texas Cultural District, Downtown Arlington, Texas blends a unique mix of activities, sights, tastes and sounds that attract visitors and locals alike. Within its less than a two-mile radius, Downtown is home to a top tier public research university, prolific fine and performing artists and arts institutions, live entertainment, exciting NCAA and professional athletics, one-of-a-kind dining and retail, and a supportive business climate.