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Italian Family-Owned Restaurant Café Di Roma Opens in IB

Since opening March 29, Café Di Roma offers healthy and organic homemade dishes. Owners Robert and Mary Jabalee say they came to IB because of the business-friendly atmosphere.

Café Di Roma, an Italian bistro with a healthy-heart menu, is now open in Imperial Beach.

Owners Robert and Mary Jabalee focus on an old-world Italian menu filled with health-conscious food, savory tastes and reasonable prices.

It’s a small Italian jewel of a restaurant tucked directly behind the Union Bank between Ninth Street and Palm Avenue.

“We have dishes that are leaner, greener, lighter. They have less fat, fresher vegetables and less calories,” said Robert.

The menu varies and is filled with traditional pasta, paninis and special salads topped with homemade lemon nectar vinaigrette salad dressing.

The foccacia bread and panini bread is homemade and is mixed with an organic milled flax seed, which contains less oil.

“We combine old-world culinary traditions with new-world lifestyle trends to bring you beautiful and healthier Italian cuisine,” Robert said.

For more than 40 years, Mary’s parents owned Marco’s, the only family-run Italian restaurant in Coronado. After the Jabalees moved Marco's to Norman, OK. for a 10 year stint, they returned to IB, and opened Café Di Roma

With Mary’s family background filled with chefs, and Robert’s long background in the hospitality industry, they decided to bring Café Di Roma to IB.

“We love the IB and Coronado area,” Robert said. “Imperial Beach is very business friendly and we sense a business excitement in the atmosphere. We hope to be a positive contributor of this trend.”

IB City Councilwoman Lorie Bragg is just one of the many customers who enjoyed what she calls a “light version” of what Marco’s had to offer. “The food is presented well, and it is absolutely delicious,” according to Bragg.

After trying the Chicken Parmigiana, Bragg said, “I almost screamed. It was springtime after I tasted it.”

Robert said that he and his wife will not compromise the quality of food.

“We know of no other business offering what we make from scratch and we are offering a restaurant that is making food healthier. We love food, and we love the people,” said Robert.

Shorebird April 08, 2011 at 03:52 PM
where are they located?
ibcalif April 10, 2011 at 04:26 AM
633 9th St (between Calla Ave & State Highway 75) Imperial Beach, CA 91932 (619) 429-1100 At least according to Yelp!: http://www.yelp.com/biz/cafe-di-roma-imperial-beach Two good reviews there so far.
The Flower Guy April 10, 2011 at 11:50 AM
Good Luck, I.B needs more quality restaurants. We will definately stop in when we visit the town again. Jason, Liz and Henry.
Robert T July 18, 2011 at 10:19 PM
It's really good! I grew up eating homemade food that my Italian mother cooked and Cafe Di Roma is VERY GOOD!
IB catwoman July 03, 2012 at 09:39 PM
My husband and I checked it out last Friday for dinner. The service was great. The food was wonderful. Lots of garlic in a light alfredo sauce. The shrimp were not over cooked and the asperagras was cooked perfect also. My husband had the home-made ravioli and he thought they were great. Over all we were very satisfied and will return often.
Shorebird July 03, 2012 at 11:01 PM
Since I first inquired as to location I have Dined there several times..Wondermous Love the food, the service and the atmosphere.. IB's best Italian Restaurant
Island Girl February 06, 2013 at 07:33 PM
great little gem!
Shorebird February 06, 2013 at 07:40 PM
Has become my favorite Italian restaurant in South Bay..Wonderful

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