Popular downtown Windsor restaurant closing

Rino's Kitchen (photo courtesy of Rino's Kitchen & Ale House on Facebook)

It is sad news for both foodies and local political junkies.

On a Facebook post on Sunday, owner of Rino’s Kitchen Josh Fraser announced the restaurant will be closing at the end of January.

Fraser took over the restaurant from the original owner, Ward 3 Councillor Rino Bortolin, in 2015.

This is the last week the restaurant will remain open for regular dining service. On January 31, it will host a final goodbye party.

For the past few years, the restaurant has hosted the popular municipal politics podcast, Rose City Politics. The weekly podcast found a home in the attic, and in the past featured regular guests like Ward 9 Councillor Kieran McKenzie, Ward 4’s Chris Holt, Jim Morrison of Ward 10, and marijuana-advocate, Jon Liedtke.

Doug Sartori, one of the permanent panellists on the podcast, admitted it would have to find a new home, but expressed optimism a new location will be announced soon.

“We were so lucky to have a partner in Josh. Every time we had a crazy idea for an event, whether it was the all-candidates party in the 2015 federal election or our RCP awards last summer, he was always ready to play host,” said Sartori.

He said he hopes the podcast’s next host will be able to provide the same level of community engagement.

Rino’s Kitchen opened 10 years ago.