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Article updated: 4/23/2013 1:14 PM

New downtown Barrington tavern will serve nearby restaurant patrons

By Eric Peterson

A long-vacant building along the Union Pacific railroad tracks in downtown Barrington will become a tavern called the Tip Top Tap later this spring.

Village trustees approved a special-use permit Monday to turn the former Executive Center at 102 N. Cook Street into a tavern primarily intended as a waiting area for Ciao Baby! restaurant, which sits 200 feet to the east at 232 E. Main St.

The reason for the separate location is that Ciao Baby! itself has insufficient room to expand, village staff said.

Ciao Baby! owner Bill Tarsitano, who submitted the request, could not be immediately reached for comment.

The new business is classified as a tavern because it will have a liquor license but no kitchen.

Though Barrington does have a couple of existing taverns in Yankee Doodle and the Blue Heron, it hasn't approved a new one in many years -- certainly not in the 21st century, Village Manager Jeff Lawler said.

While the Tip Top Tap is mainly intended for customers waiting for a table at Ciao Baby! down the street, it won't be limited to only that clientele, Lawler added.

Barrington Trustee Robert Windon said it's good news for Ciao Baby! and the village that the restaurant is attracting overflow crowds warranting the new business.

Barrington's Economic & Community Development Director Peg Blanchard said Tarsitano is aiming for a late May opening of the tavern.

Among the work planned before opening is construction of a new facade and two handicapped-accessible restrooms, as well as improved accessibility to the building itself. The maximum capacity of the tavern will be 50 people.

Though food won't be prepared on site, the business will have a catering license allowing some food made at Ciao Baby! to be brought over by wait staff.

The future tavern space at the Executive Center building has been vacant for nearly three years. There is active office space on the second floor and the Bataille Academie of the Danse is located at the west end of the building.

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