A longtime downtown deli has closed.
Coppola’s Deli, at Main and 12th streets, closed its doors on Friday after 18 years of serving up sandwiches.
Owner Rob Cherry, who has worked under restaurant namesake Joe Coppola, said he is looking to expand the Coppola’s brand with more stores and later hours to include dinner service.
Daytime business has been brisk at the downtown location, but Cherry said the storefront is not conducive to those plans.
Cherry said he is looking to relocate to either the Southside or the Innsbrook area, but he said nothing has been finalized. He said the long-term goal would be to open additional Coppola’s shops, as well.
“I think we can enhance our brand by bringing some other elements in,” he said.
The deli is one of two Coppola’s in town. The original, at 2900 W. Cary St. in Carytown, has been open for 30 years. Tom Roukous owns that location.
Cherry said a Rudino’s Pizza and Grinders will be moving into the downtown spot, which sits at 1116 E. Main St. The location will be the second in Richmond for the Cary, North Carolina-based chain, which also has a restaurant in John Rolfe Commons.
A note posted on a sandwich board outside the downtown Coppola’s on Friday thanked customers for the patronage and noted that Cherry would still offer catering and box lunches by request.
Cherry said his customers on the restaurant’s last day were sad to see the deli close.
“I haven’t heard anybody say, ‘Great! We hate your stuff. We’re glad to see you leave,’” Cherry said.