Cornwall restaurant opening February will create up to 40 jobs post-pandemic

In this December 2020, file photo, the Lounge58 Bar & Grill on Pitt Street in Cornwall, Ont. will be the new home to a Mexicali Rosa's, slated to open in February 2021. The Mexican restaurant is expected to create up to 40 local jobs. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

CORNWALL – A downtown Cornwall restaurant, set to open the middle of next month, is expected to create up to 40 local jobs once we’re out of the pandemic.

Mexicali Rosa’s is reinvigorating a brand that was known to locals in the past. The location is on Pitt Street between Water Street and First Street, most recently known as the Lounge58 Bar & Grill.

Franchisor spokesman Mathew Youden told Cornwall Newswatch it’s being run by two businessmen – Yogesh Patel and Dimitri Aramouni.

“Dimitri is a franchisee already within the system and has three locations in Ottawa,” Youden explained.

He says the recent coronavirus lockdown has had some challenges but there are advantages to setting up a location at this time.

“It hinders things such as training but as far as moving forward with construction it’s really a great time to do it. The guys aren’t busy with their other businesses obviously when this happens. We don’t want to see anyone in lockdown but if there’s a silver lining,” Youden said.

Under “normal circumstances” outside a pandemic, Youden estimates the location will have 20-30 full- and part-time jobs in the winter and expand up to 40 in the summer.

“I personally remember the Cornwall location. I worked for the franchise company at the time when there was a Cornwall location there. Mexi’s was always well received and we’re very excited to be back in the market,” Youden said.

The last time the restaurant was in the city was in the early 2000s.

Outside Ottawa and Cornwall, Mexi’s also has a location in Moncton, N.B.