The owners of Grazie! Italian Eatery decided to revamp their restaurant following advice from an unlikely source—a class of IU marketing students studying how to make the eatery more efficient. Based on their findings, the owners began using ingredients from local farms, hiring culinary grads to improve their menu, and training their staff in wine pairing.
However, the chefs kept customer favorites, such as the freshly baked focaccia with herb dipping oil that accompanies each meal. Bartenders pour specialty martinis behind a modern cement bar, and plates of spinach fettuccine with roasted-garlic cream sauce sit on tables next to glasses of wine drawn from a list of more than 250 varietals. Live jazz music and wine-tasting events entertain diners in the indoor lounge, and those seated outside can look out at the bustling square or the night sky, whose stars perpetually shift into the faces of talk-show personalities.