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Transit Cafe brings new flavors to Ironton

May. 30, 2012 @ 07:00 PM

IRONTON -- The Transit Cafe is part of the end result of a major restoration project in the city of Ironton.

The Berg Building, located on South 2nd Street, was given a major restoration over the course of one year as part of a partnership between the Lawrence County Community Action Organization (CAO) and Tri-State Industries. The renovation started in 2010. The Berg Building is now home to the city's transit center and a new restaurant. The small, deli-style sandwich shop opened in April of this year.

"It took about a year to do the full renovation," said Jason Kinder, community employment specialist with CAO. "The first time I came in, I walked up to the second floor, looked down and saw the basement, looked up then saw the sky. It was a shell of a building, and the CAO spent a full year renovating it. The historic society assisted us telling us what color schemes were historically accurate and what we could put in.

"The renovation was made with the cafe in mind," Kinder added. "Being a historical building we were somewhat limited in what we could do in terms of a kitchen. We decided to go with a deli while trying to make the food as fresh and healthy as we could. We consulted with a chef named Keith Taylor. He helped us conceive the menu to be something that we could do without a lot of freezer space. We wanted it to be fresh, healthy and a little different from what Ironton has."

The result is a menu that is unique to the downtown Ironton area, according to Tim Nunnery, director of the Lawrence County Board of Developmental Disabilities.

"These are classic sandwiches with a gourmet twist to them," said Nunnery. "We get our bread from Brunetti's Bakery in Kenova, and our meats are brought in fresh from Hormel. They are special-ordered low-sodium, low-preservative, whole muscle meats. When the farmer's market opens in the summer we are hoping to have all our produce brought in from there."

So far the cafe's most popular sandwich has been the California Turkey Club ($8) featuring thinly sliced roast turkey, smoked bacon, tomato, avocado spread, lettuce and dijon-infused aioli served on three pieces of sourdough bread. Another popular sandwich is the Italian Hero ($7) filled with pepperoni, ham, salami, provolone cheese and veggies. There is also a Sausage and Pepper Hoagie ($8) and a Muffaletta ($9). The restaurant has a homemade soup of the day every day ($2.50 a cup, $5 a bowl) in varieties such as Roasted Pepper and Gouda and Chipotle Black Bean.

The Transit Cafe is located at 225 South 2nd St., Ironton. It is open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Daily soup and sandwich specials are announced on the cafe's Facebook page. Cash and all major credit cards are accepted.

For more information or to place a carryout order, call 740-532-0448.

If you go: Transit Cafe

Type of food: Sandwich Shop

Address: 225 South 2nd St., Ironton

Phone number: 740-532-0448

Payments accepted: Cash and all major credit cards

Hours: 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Closed Sunday.

More online: For more than 150 restaurant profiles and growing, visit the entertainment page at www.herald-dispatch.com.