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Former Hinterland chef ready to open new Italian restaurant in De Pere

Orsetta Craft Kitchen & Bar to open later in February on Broadway
Posted at 7:00 PM, Feb 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-02 20:00:12-05

DE PERE (NBC 26) — A new restaurant is set to open later in February in De Pere: Orsetta Craft Kitchen & Bar. The new place will be owned and operated by a familiar face in the Green Bay food scene: Kelly Qualley, formerly the head chef at Hinterland Brewery.

  • Orsetta is located at 109 N. Broadway, the former home of Bilotti's Pizza Garden and Strada Pizzeria
  • Qualley plans to open the restaurant after Valentine's Day for dinner service, starting with a Wednesday through Saturday schedule
  • The menu will feature Italian staples with a twist, including sourdough-crust pizza and some Asian flavors
  • Qualley hopes to open the restaurant for lunch service and takeout orders in the future
  • Video shows the preparation of a Sicilian-style pepperoni pizza

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

It's a chef's dream — opening their own restaurant in their hometown. We're inside De Pere's newest restaurant, where you can soon join us for a Sicilian pizza or a drink at the bar.

"Long noodles, bucatini, linguine, angel hair," Qualley says.

Fresh parmesan on pizza, and new beer taps. Orsetta Craft Kitchen & Bar is starting to come together.

"I've been wanting to do this ever since I graduated from high school and went to culinary school right away," Qualley said.

Kelly Qualley went to high school in De Pere and wants to be a part of the city's growth.

After 15 years as head chef at Hinterland Brewery, he has his own place on Broadway.

"This definitely feels more like it's coming from me specifically," Qualley said.

Qualley hopes even the name — Italian for small female bear — will be a conversation starter.

"I plan on it being a little bit different dining experience, where I'd like people to try more than one thing when they're here," Qualley said.

Qualley says the menu — Italian staples with some Asian and other influences — will bring something new to the Green Bay food scene.

"The supper clubs, I love all of that, and Friday fish fry and all of those things are very, very dear to me," Qualley said. "But I think there needs to be more variety than that."

He's still looking to fill his full-time staff — but Orsetta is nearly ready for business.

"I hope people support me because first of all, I have a great product. Secondly, I'm from the area and I want to contribute to the area in a positive way," Qualley said.

Kelly is looking to open Orsetta later this month for dinner service, starting with a Wednesday through Saturday schedule.