Eli Gold to open Italian restaurant in Pelham

The radio voice of Alabama Crimson Tide football has embarked on a new venture that promises to excite the taste buds.

Eli Gold and friend and business partner Walter Caron plan to open Nino’s Italian Restaurant at 2698 Pelham Parkway next to Pee Wee’s Pawn Shop, Caron said.

“Eli and I spoke with a lot of people in the area, and we came to the conclusion Pelham needed a good Italian restaurant,” Caron said. “It’s a great area, a fabulous location, and it’ll be good food fast.”

The family casual eatery will serve hand-tossed Sicilian deep dish and New York-style thin crust pizza as well as a variety of pasta dishes.

Prices will range from $6.95 to $14.95, Caron said.

Though Gold won’t be giving up his day job, he is in no way a silent partner, Caron said.

“You will see us and our families behind the counter,” Caron said. “Eli travels a lot, but when he’s in town it will not be unusual to have Eli Gold bring a pizza to your table.”

Caron, who once owned a delicatessen in his native New York City, will oversee day–to–day operations.

He most recently worked for Salvatore’s Pizza and Pasta in Hoover and helped open its Highway 280 location.

Caron said Nino’s is undergoing renovations, mainly painting and the installation of a stone wall “so we can have that old world Italian look.”

With an initial investment between $100,000 and $175,000, the restaurant will employ 10 people, Caron said.

He and Gold haven’t decided whether Nino’s will have a wait staff or provide semi–self–service, when customers order at counter, seat themselves and pick up their order when it’s called. Caron estimates Nino’s will open in early June “if everything goes according to plan.”

“We’re glad to be here in Pelham, and we hope the neighborhood comes out and gives us a try,” he said. “Come meet Eli and myself and our families, and we’ll treat you like family.”