By LISA CAPOBIANCO
JV’s Taproom and Rebel Dog Coffee Co. may offer distinct menus, but inside their shared location on Route 10, these new Plainville businesses have teamed up to create a new kind of dining experience for customers.
Both located in the former Confetti restaurant building at 393 Farmington Avenue, JV’s Taproom and Rebel Dog hosted a grand opening event last Tuesday, showcasing the newly renovated space with food samples, live music, raffles and other activities to the public.
After owning Confetti for nearly 20 years, Peter Lemontis and his wife decided to retire the restaurant, bringing on a new brand—and a young management team for both JV’s Taproom and Rebel Dog. Lemontis, who continues his prepared food company, said he will serve as a mentor to members of the new management team.
“We’re more broad-based than we were,” said Lemontis, adding how he looks forward to watching the young management team grow with the community. “You can come here twice a week instead of special occasions and birthdays, which we still do. Now we’re into day in and day out dining.”
Downstairs in the old Confetti bar, folks can mingle or get some work done at Rebel Dog, a specialty coffee shop that offers pastries, breakfast sandwiches and ready made meals. Known for its expresso drinks with latte art and its Nitro Cold Brew, Rebel Dog wholesales its coffee from Irving Farm Coffee Roasters, which is based in New York, said Harrison Poltorak, who runs Rebel Dog.
Coffee is graded on a scale of zero to 100, and specialty coffee must rate 80 and above, added Poltorak.
“We serve only specialty-graded coffee,” said Poltorak, adding that all of the coffee shop’s products are locally sourced. “The quality, the flavor…is just a much better quality product.”
When finishing an expresso or chai latte at Rebel Dog, folks can towards the upper end of the facility to JV’s Taproom—a bar and grill that offers a variety of craft beers and wood-fired pizza—a food item that Confetti won an award for last year.
“It’s definitely an award-winning pizza,” said Vanessa Champagne, who runs JV’s with her fiancée, Jerry Daniels. “That’s one thing that definitely transferred over to the new restaurant.”
From pork chops and chicken cutlets to Certified Angus steaks and burgers, JV’s offers a variety of options for all taste buds. The menu also includes salads that are built on top of flatbreads—and sandwiches that feature bread made from pizza dough. The bar JV’s offers six wine drafts and 14 beers on tap—many of which are from the New England area.
JV’s, which got its name from both Daniels and Champagne, also offers breakfast on weekends from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“We’re trying to provide simple, good food, but also get a little eclectic—bring something new to the eating scene,” said Daniels, who makes the bread and wood-fired pizza at JV’s.
When the warmer weather rolls around, JV’s Taproom plans to open its outside deck to customers.
“Half of it is going to be set up with couches and chairs,” said Champagne. “People can sit out there with their drinks. There will also be a few tables out there for actual table service.”
Whether customers are hungry for a slice of pizza or craving a cup of specialty coffee, Poltorak said Rebel Dog and JV’s allow diners to enjoy different products through a more relaxed or social setting.
“JV’s will be open at night, and we stay open late, so we can serve our coffee to the restaurant,” said Poltorak. But someone can also get a pizza after doing some work in the coffee shop and bring it down here and enjoy it with a beer while they’re doing some work.”
Champagne said Rebel Dog and JV’s Taproom are two distinct businesses, yet compliment each other well, as both offer a comfortable atmosphere. After Confetti closed in December, the renovation process took about six weeks to complete.
“We wanted to build a place where people can come in and relax, where they can bring a group of friends,” said Champagne. “It brings a smile on my face when you see countless people walking through the doors and they keep saying this is something they’ve been looking for in Plainville for a long time. Their response has been very enthusiastic.”
Noting how both Rebel Dog and JV’s Taproom are creating a positive stir in the community, Mark DeVoe, the director of planning and economic development for the town of Plainville, said Lemontis embraced a completely different concept that worked.
“It takes a special breed to understand the food service industry and make a long-term goal of it,” said DeVoe.