Restaurant Lorena’s, a popular French-American spot in Maplewood, is relocating to a larger, more modern space just a few doors down from its original location. A dining staple of the community for 15 years, Restaurant Lorena’s will upgrade from 1,400 to 4,500 square feet of retail at Clarus Maplewood.
Owners Humberto and Lorena Campos are in the process of designing the interior of the new space at 160 Maplewood Avenue, just steps from the renowned restaurant’s former address at 168 Maplewood Avenue, and promise the same warmth and intimacy their customers expect, plus some new energy. Humberto Campos is also the head chef.
“We’ve always considered a move to a larger space, but over the 15 years we have been here nothing of this caliber ever became available until now,” said Humberto Campos. “Clarus Maplewood is the perfect fit for us. It’s a beautiful building, barely three years old, and the proximity relative to our current location is super convenient. We’ve created a huge client base over the years, so we wanted to stay close by. Our regular customers will have no trouble finding us here. They’ll actually be parking in the same parking lot.”
During the move, the new location will be open for curbside pickup and local delivery and once the interior space is ready for dine-in service, Lorena’s hopes to re-open for limited capacity indoor dining, depending on current conditions, regulations, and guidelines from public health officials. The restaurant is aiming for a late February grand opening.
Chef Campos plans to take advantage of the more than 3,000 additional square feet and offer a dual dining concept: one dining room will serve the haute cuisine prepared with seasonal ingredients and classic French techniques that Lorena’s is famous for, while the second dining room will serve a broader, approachably priced menu.
And after years of being BYO, Restaurant Lorena’s will have a full-service bar, as well as a wine list and seasonal cocktail program curated by Chef Campos. The new location will also offer patio dining, wine pairings, and varied formats such as a tasting menu. Partially open to the dining area, the new larger kitchen will allow for special seating and a chef’s table in the future.
“What we’re really looking forward to is seeing our clients again soon and sharing the joy of the new space with them, as well as seeing new faces and making new connections,” chef Campos said. “The fact that we are able to stay in Maplewood is quite comforting. We’ve formed a lot of friendships here over the years, not just with our long-time clients, but also with the town’s merchants. It’s a tight-knit community. People look out for each other. I couldn’t ask for a better town, so being able to move just next door is a no-brainer.”
Clarus Maplewood is an award-winning mixed-use building built in 2017. “We are thrilled to welcome Restaurant Lorena’s to Clarus Maplewood,” said Joseph M. Forgione, Founder and Principal of JMF Properties. “Lorena’s is one of the businesses that make downtown Maplewood a special place, a popular destination for both Maplewood locals and people from nearby communities. The fact that we were able to accommodate their desire to upgrade their space without the need to move out of Maplewood Village is something we are very proud of.”
For more information on Restaurant Lorena’s, visit their website here.