Aspen Creek Grill has started the demolition and will start the construction phase of the old Johnny Carino's Italian Restaurant building at 1725 W. Southwest Loop 323 in the coming weeks. Jeff Williams, a former general manager of Traditions, will be returning to Tyler as the managing partner of the restaurant.
"This is a home-coming for me," Williams said. "I worked at Traditions until I went to Lubbuck in 2011 to work for Aspen Creek Grill. My daughter is a graduate of UT Tyler. I'm excited to be going back to Tyler. The people of Tyler love restaurants and we'll be ready to serve the community."
The restaurant chain prides itself in its use of fresh ingredients and making most of the items on the menu from scratch. Aspen Creek Grill specializes in American cuisine that includes pasta dishes, their famous double-double burgers, freshly chopped salads, dressings, salsa and hand-cut steaks.
"We have a cold room that is maintained at 32 degrees where our meat cutters cut our steaks," Williams said. "They are cut fresh so, they maintain their freshness."
The restaurant is planning to open around Dec. 12. The company will bring more than 130 jobs to the community. Hiring will take place in October and November and training will start in late November.
"The interior of the former Johnny Carino's will be completely redone," Williams said. "The Italian style roof will be removed and the building will have a completely different look inside and out."
- LouAnna Campbell