If location is a barrier to your business’ success, find a new spot.
That’s why Ethos Trattoria’s owners decided to move from north Richland to south Richland.
Its owners also have some other changes up their sleeves.
The former full-service service restaurant is changing its name to Ethos Bakery and Café and will offer quick-service dining — at least for now.
“We’re playing around with what dinner may or may not look like,” said co-owner Angela Kora. “Initially we’ll keep with more daytime operations, but we have had a lot of customers who say they love our cocktail program, they love our dinners, so once we get up and running, once we open up, we’ll start adding dinners.”
Ethos moved from 800 Dalton St. on Dec. 30 into the former Sharehouse Coffee space at 2150 Keene Road in south Richland. It plans to reopen there in mid-January.
Sharehouse ended its four-year run in that building Oct. 30, citing financial difficulties.
Ethos’ owners renovated the interior, including extending a wall to create more kitchen space.
“It’s a little bit bigger than the other space but the layout is different. The bakery is bigger, the kitchen is smaller but a little bit more tucked away. There will be less seating but it’s going to be a little cozier,” Kora said.
Ethos Group, owned and operated by Kora and Scot Newell, began in October 2011 as Ethos Bakery, a wholesale and retail wood-fired bakery and pizzeria in the Horn Rapids Business District.
Ethos Trattoria debuted more than a year ago but in September curtailed its evening hours.
At the new location, Ethos will still be serving its signature pizzas, as well as sandwiches, salads and soups. It also expanded its pastry offerings and hopes to start selling bread.
Kora hopes to offer entree and pasta specials for dinner on Fridays and Saturdays.
They hired a new chef from Phoenix, Nick Henry, and recently added a new baker from Seattle, Jennifer Campbell.
Kora hopes to do more business and special event catering. Ethos recently started catering at the Walter Clore Wine and Culinary Center in Prosser.
“We’re going to hopefully expand the bakery and offer more daily and just have more special ordering and catering opportunities,” Kora said.
North Richland challenges
Kora said the former north Richland location wasn’t meeting her expectations.
Although the restaurant did well with the lunchtime crowd due to its proximity to Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Hanford contractors, she said not many people would stop in to grab coffee or a pastry on their way to work or stop in for happy hour on their way home.
“Lunch was usually pretty good, but we expected a lot more. You have 10,000 cars passing through every day. We expected a lot more people stopping on their way to work or people stopping by on their way back. On paper it looks great, but when you start to understand the Tri-Cities culture even more, we thought we had a pretty good idea, but what we found out is people don’t stop on their way home. It was just a barrier for a lot of people,” Kora said.
“Scott and I had a lot of conversations of, ‘What do we do? Do we try to hang on as much as we can out here? How long can we keep it going out there?’ And it’s not easy. We spent so much time and energy and money in that location and had so many expectations for it,” she said.
Kora said her customers and other supporters motivated her to keep going and give it another shot in a new location.
“Seeing how well we did at the farmers markets helped us realize, ‘OK, so maybe it’s not us. Maybe it is location.’ We were thinking what else can we do to make it work for now, that was our biggest motivation, wanting to provide the service that we provide for our customers. That’s really what helped too — to see it as, ‘We have another opportunity to not close up shop,’” Kora said.
“Dinner did well when we first opened and it did well through winter, but in summer is when we noticed it started to taper off and then it didn’t come back and we did try to adjust a few things but it wasn’t enough to get it to where we wanted it to be,” she said.
Tentative hours at the new location are 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.