In the months since opening Cibo (pronounced Chee-bo) Neighborhood Eatery in central Rockledge, Chef Luca Filadi and wife, Lee Ann, have been quietly assessing their new enterprise. Former proprietors of the highly regarded and decidedly upscale Mango Tree in Cocoa Beach, the Filadis opened this new location in Rockledge last year.
Gone are the tourists and nearby hotels. Gone (mostly) are the “regulars” and the quaffers who would never turn a nose up at a 2-for- 1 happy hour drink. In are sprawling residential neighborhoods, and easy access from the I-95 and Fiske Boulevard interchange. (Their new place is housed in the former location of Domenico’s Italian restaurant.)
Chef Luca is still passionately creating dishes with ties to his Italian roots that now nod toward the “modern rustic” vibe he is adamant about providing in this new space. “We want to present flavors of the world in a casual setting,” Chef Luca recently said.
Cibo’s – which means food in Filadi’s native Italian – is combining more delectable flavors and textures and spreading them throughout a menu which includes breakfast (yes, breakfast at a full service, sit down restaurant in Rockledge), lunch and dinner during the week and brunch on Sundays.
The menu varies based on the availability of the finest ingredients the Filadis can source, locally and internationally (where, for example, they order their Italian prosciutto).
So far, the gnudi and the specialty blend burger, an 8-ounce orb made with brisket, short rib and beef chuck, have been standout hits, said Lee Ann. International street food options include three different bread-based selections (flavors of the Middle East, Spain and Italy) and taste of Asia – a vegetable dumpling with hoisin sauce and scallions.
A few important mainstays from MT followed, including chefs who help keep the operation running for three meals each day, a few key staffers and the musical entertainment of Tom Hueston. He’s been with the Filadis since 2010, and now sets up on a small stage at the front of the main seating area.
There are bigger plans on the horizon for Cibo, including a bakery that will feature fresh breads and biscotti, and a selection of fine desserts. Wine dinners are also on the horizon, but all in due course. “We must remain true to our roots while honoring [the foods of] other cultures. That’s it, you know, food is culture. We are trying to pass that on [to our clientele].”
Cibos Neighborhood Eatery 3100 S. Fiske Boulevard, Rockledge
Hours and menus available at www.CiboEatery.com