LAKE WYLIE — The New River Rat owner are hoping for a mid-week opening, breathing life back into the former restaurant location on S.C. 557.
The restaurant is scheduled to open Tuesday or Wednesday of this week with about 45 employees. The first couple of days are by reservation only.
The exact date will depend when the final health inspection is completed, said Andrew Randazzo.
The Randazzo family is confident the restaurant will be fully open by the weekend. Since the Twin Rivers restaurant operated in the space less than six months ago, the transition to getting another restaurant in operation has been smooth.
“We had everything here,” said Randazzo.
Signage and other changes continued last week. The River Rat opened in Lake Wylie in 1979, run by the Powell family. The restaurant moved from 4376 Charlotte Hwy. (S.C. 49) to the 5301 Hwy. 557 location in 1989. The River Rat closed in the summer 2010. Twin Rivers opened last August, as local investors improved water connections and other upgrades. The restaurant closed in January.
The new restaurant updates the older name, as The New River Rat. It will focus on seafood, but also offer burgers, steaks and Italian food. The Randazzo family has a history of running restaurants in York County, including at one time eight Tony’s Pizza locations and others serving Italian food.
They also operate Grid Iron in Steele Creek, another restaurant where they kept the name of a once-successful operation hoping to bring back customers along with new fans.