A popular Renfrew restaurant held a free lunch with the community to mark 50 years since opening.

Piccolo Mondo, on Hairst Street, will be turning half a century in September and is conducting a variety of events throughout 2024.

And recently they held the free lunch for around 50 members of the community.

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The Gazette:

Lio Pierotti, director at Piccolo Mondo, said that the event was a way of thanking people for sticking with them as he outlined the change in the hospitality sector.

He said: "Habits have changed over the years, I would say.

"People's perception of how they eat out has changed drastically. 

"When I look back years ago there was a rigid two or three-course meal, business lunches and there were set times where you would be busy.

"But now things have changed and people go out to eat all the time, at different times of the day and any day of the week too.

"So it is a different industry now.

"But we wanted to put something on to repay the loyalty of many of the customers in the area.

"I am glad that many of them could make it along."

The Gazette:

Many of those who attended the lunch event were people who helped within the community, as well as people who would benefit from the occasion.

Councillor Lisa-Marie Hughes also attended the event to show her appreciation for the restaurant.

She said: "This restaurant is at the heart of the town and is simply fantastic to see them do something like this.

"Everyone knows Piccolo Mondo in Renfrew and one way or another many would have been in here for a special occasion, lunch or dinner.

"It is a fantastic initiative by the restaurant and everyone here seems to have enjoyed themselves.”

The Renfrew restaurant which opened in 1974 was started by Lio's mum and dad, Cav. Antonio and Giuliana Peirotti, after they moved from Italy to Scotland in the mid-1960s.

Lio, who started working in the restaurant when he was a young teenager, had originally studied to be an interpreter before moving into the business full-time.

He began at the Glasgow restaurant, La Fiorentina which is also owned by the Peirotti family.

He said: "I started in La Fiorentina after coming back from studying abroad as I wanted to earn money.

“It is a very very busy venue and I enjoyed it.

“I found to difficult to pull myself away (from the business), although my mum and dad tried suggesting I go down another path.

“But I do love it despite the stress at times. 

“Life is all about finding a balance.”

“We will be doing other events throughout the year and our customers can keep an eye out for those."