ROCKFORD — Instead of closing, the Indoor City Market restaurant Ronit’s Kitchen has new ownership.
As of Wednesday, Mustafa Abdall and Moe Allen are the new owners of the restaurant. They have renamed it Guzel, which means beautiful in Turkish.
The new name is meant to be a reflection of the Turkish-style breakfast the new owners will be adding to the menu.
Abdall is the founder of Winnebago Emerging Small Business Services, an organization that focuses on providing support to bilingual and multicultural entrepreneurs.
He was saddened to hear that Ronit’s Kitchen would be closing, so he got on the phone with Ronit Golan, the previous owner, to find out what he could do to help keep Mediterranean restaurant stay open. Time was of the essence as the restaurant had been scheduled to close on Wednesday.
Abdall asked that Golan give him 24 hours to find an investor to take over the restaurant and he did.
“I texted Ronit at 12 a.m. and said we are in. She texted me back at 6 a.m. and said, ’Yes, let’s meet.’ We met at 6 p.m. and signed and agreed about it,” said Abdall.
Abdall says the menu will remain the same with the exception of the breakfast additions. The restaurant will also have new hours and be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven day a week.
Despite the news of Rockford-area bars and restaurants needing to revert back to outdoor dining and curbside pickup as of Saturday due to a rise in the postivitiy rate for COVID-19, Abdall says he and Allen remain focused on keeping the business running.
“One day after we signed, those restrictions showed up. We were absent for a few hours but then we said, ’No, we will not give up.’ We will focus on online, pickup and delivery and we will see,” said Abdall.
Although Golan is sad to see her dream restaurant leave her ownership she is glad to know that her vision will remain intact and knows that her business is in good hands.
“I trust Mustafa because he is very active in the community and we have been involved in other events together so it’s nice to have someone I trust taking over the restaurant,” said Golan.
Shaquil Manigault: [email protected]; @RRstarShaquil