Get to know the history of Jhony’s, a bar with famous parmigiana, which gains a new unit in SP

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Get to know the history of Jhony’s, a bar with famous parmigiana, which gains a new unit in SP

08/23/2023

Time

1:45 pm

Laura Lewer

Little time separates the moment when the order is taken from the moment when one of the most famous parmigianas in São Paulo arrives at the table, covered in layers of mozzarella and tomato sauce. “Leaving here hungry is difficult”, says Toninho, one of the owners of Jhony’s, sitting next to his two partners and in front of a large tray that is accompanied by another one with fluffy rice and french fries.

Parmigiana for two at Jhony's, which sells for R$106 for the filet mignon version and R$91 for the chicken version

Parmigiana for two at Jhony's, which sells for R$106 for the filet mignon version and R$91 for the chicken version

Parmigiana for two at Jhony’s, which sells for R$106 for the filet mignon version and R$91 for the chicken version – Gabriel Cabral/Folhapress

At the family trio restaurant, completed by brothers Junior and Reginaldo Aguiar, both cousins ​​of Toninho —who prefers not to use his last name— and all from Mucambo, Ceará, the dish for one person serves two, and the portion for a couple is easily enough. for a table of four. It’s been 11 years at home and plenty is the rule. “Serving well, without misery, is also our trademark”, he says.

Not even the owners know how many parmigianas come out of the kitchens of the restaurant units per month, grouped in Santa Cecília, in the central region of São Paulo. But there are many. For the inauguration of the fifth house, on Rua Jaguaribe —the first off Rua Canuto do Val—, last Thursday (17th), they took stock: there were 81 orders for the dish.

There were also 192 bottles of beer, proof that the establishment went through the decade maintaining its reputation as one of the most remembered “bars and snacks” in the city. But, before reaching the level that made businessmen spread out units on sidewalks so close together, Jhony’s didn’t
it didn’t even have a sign.

“When we arrived, in 2012, people only knew that it had that name, that it was that of a former owner, because of the word of mouth”, says Toninho, who bought the bar with his cousins ​​after the business they had , Tropical, had to be closed to make way for the headquarters of the Brazilian Bar Association, the OAB, in the center of the city.

Jhony’s was a simple bar, run by Seu Gimba on a “lifeless and very dull” corner, according to Toninho. The clientele was small and formed by residents of the neighborhood and the trio soon began to increase the options — among them, the parmigiana recipe from the previous management that, on the new menu, became a star.

Eventually, the bar’s tables stopped being enough and the way out was to rent the front property to make Jhony’s 2. The same happened with the third and fourth units, which repeated the formula and ended up adding to the fervor of businesswoman Lilian Gonçalves , which until then reigned supreme in Canuto do Val with businesses such as Biroska, Coconut and Siga La Vaca —during the pandemic, the first two closed their doors for good.

Detail of the new unit of Jhony's Bar and Restaurant in Santa Cecília, on the corners of Rua Jaguaribe and Doutor Cesário da Mota Júnior

Detail of the new unit of Jhony's Bar and Restaurant in Santa Cecília, on the corners of Rua Jaguaribe and Doutor Cesário da Mota Júnior

Detail of the new unit of Jhony’s Bar and Restaurant in Santa Cecília, on the corners of Rua Jaguaribe and Rua Doutor Cesário da Mota Júnior – Gabriel Cabral/Folhapress

“To open Jhony’s 3 we got to talk to her and she also owns the property where the fourth unit is located. We never wanted to compete and, in the pandemic, she was very understanding of our situation”, says Toninho.

Other businesses came with time — they now own the restaurants Old Gold and Nova Barão, nearby — but the chain that dominated Rua Canuto do Val is the most successful. Toninho’s theory is that Jhony’s benefited from the new face that Santa Cecília and Vila Buarque gained from 2013 onwards, which brought in new residents and a public that had not yet frequented the region.

“Before, it was just locals who sat here and then students from Santa Casa came to help spread the word”, he says. There was also the LGBT public that was very important in this neighborhood revolution and Carnival, with blocks like Charanga do França”.

This also made Jhony’s change. Kascão Oliveira, bartender from São Paulo, created a cocktail menu that appears on the menu in large photos, with funny messages like “if I’m already happy alone, imagine drinking this beauty” attached to the glasses.

“We have a cool audience. We don’t need a premium cocktail shop, just supply the tables with good drinks”, says Kascão.

In the new unit, which precedes plans to expand the business outside the neighborhood, the counter is tidier, with bottles on display, and the tables by the window have gained a green upholstery with a vintage look.

There is, however, no difference in Jhony’s menu or pub vibe. At the opening, families and groups of friends would order another cold drink to the sound of a chorinho group just a few minutes’ walk from the street that is home to the other four branches of the restaurant, in full swing.

Source: Folha

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