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Eatery Opens on Opera House Square

Claremont — The owners of a Latin American restaurant that has just opened on Opera House Square hope to fill another niche in the Upper Valley’s widening ethnic cuisine palette.

“We feel like we’re providing something different … and we believe that the food will speak for itself,” said Shane Bodkins, who opened Revolution Cantina two weeks ago with his partner, Isabel Guillen. “Our food is more Latin cuisine that is lighter and not always spicy.”

The two also own the successful New Socials Bar and Grill nearby on Pleasant Street.

Revolution Cantina will have 120 seats when construction is completed in the next few months. There are 80 seats in upstairs portion of the building, and there will be 30 more places downstairs. An outdoor deck also will open in the spring, Guillen said.

“We did a quiet opening on Nov. 17, and so far things are going well and the food has been really well received,” said Guillen, who was born in Bolivia and grew up in the Cuban community of Miami. “A lot of the recipes we’re using are old family recipes.”

Both partners have been in the restaurant business for many years. For more than a decade, Guillen and her former husband owned and operated Bistro Nouveau, a popular restaurant in Claremont now located in the Eastman community in Grantham.

Bodkins started in the business in 1995 and worked in the kitchen and in management for the Blue Sky Restaurant Group, which owns Jesse’s and Molly’s in Hanover and created and opened Lui Lui in West Lebanon and Nashua, N.H.

After Guillen, who has an additional background in marketing and customer service, opened New Socials in 2010 in the old Sophie and Zeke’s location, she brought in Bodkins as a partner. New Socials has seen at least a 30 percent growth since it opened, the partners said, and they believe Revolution Cantina will compliment the older restaurant’s business and will add to the choices in the Claremont area.

Revolution Cantina is open Wednesday through Saturday for lunch and dinner and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., serving a brunch menu from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Menu prices range from $5 to $17. The telephone number is 603-504-6310