Pasco in the News

  1. Ciao Trattoria Celebrates One Year
  2. Dairgold in Pasco
  3. Planning for Downtown

Ciao Trattoria on 112 N 4th Ave is celebrating one year in business

For Susanne Ayala the first year of owning and operating Ciao Trattoria with her husband Jessie has gone by like a blink of an eye.

"Honestly, it feels like yesterday that we opened, so for us to hit this milestone is awesome. It was just coming into the unknown. We didn't know if this was going to work or how to forecast the budget. We had to take the chance and simply figure it out," said Susanne Ayala.

Susanne and her husband Jessie operated an Italian restaurant in Prosser 12 years ago before they pivoted to a food truck and gained a large following. When it was time to open another brick-and-mortar restaurant, downtown Pasco seemed like the perfect fit. Even though many people had their doubts that an Italian restaurant would work the heart of downtown Pasco, Susanne says she and Jessie were confident things would work out.

A pizza and a glass of wine

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"We heard all the comments. But we are confident. We already had a following and we knew that people would be willing to come here. When we opened the food truck, we wanted to keep the Italian feel to it, but we added some Mediterranean to it. So, the Gyro sandwiches and the Gyro bowls became a number one seller. When we put our menu together, we wanted that same feel, so we combined those together," said Ayala. 

“When I talked with Susanne and Jessie before they opened, I could see they had a vision for the restaurant that was going to work. Their love and enthusiasm for their food is infectious so I immediately bought into what they were trying to accomplish. I’m so proud of how they are utilizing the Pasco Specialty Kitchen as part of their business model. They are an inspiration to our clients, and they are utilizing the City’s tools for achieving their business goals,” said Mike Gonzalez, Economic Development Manager for the City of Pasco. 

A person and person posing for a picture

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Susanne says the first year hasn't been without its challenges. The restaurant doesn't have a full kitchen or stove with hood. They cook a lot of their food at the Pasco Specialty Kitchen (PSK) that's just a block over from the restaurant. Susan says she wants to be an inspiration to other clients who may think the challenges are too great to have success. 

"We didn't let the fact that this restaurant doesn't have a full kitchen or hood hold us back. We said to ourselves how can we do this without those things. We've utilized the PSK to make sure we can make it work here and be able to do this here," said Ayala.

Susanne and Jessie recently got creative and put together an event called Arias in the Alley. It was an event that brought food, drinks and singing to the alley adjacent to the restaurant. It's something that's very popular in the Seattle area and in Europe. Susan says she was a little nervous going into the event, but she knew she had a vision that would work. 

A group of people sitting at a table with drinks

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"It was scary because we didn't know if it was going to work. I had a specific vision. I wanted it to feel like you were being transported out of Pasco and give it a very European alleyway feel.  It turned out exactly way I envisioned. It was great partnering with community partners like Jose Iniguez. It has inspired the community and inspired me to do more," said Ayala. 

"The best part of this year has been the friendships and relationships we've formed. We've had a great relationship with the City of Pasco and other agencies and our customers have been great," said Ayala.

Ciao Trattoria
112 N. 4th Ave. 
[email protected]