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      Cozy dining with unique flair

      The Rubiayat is a Persian poem about food and friends. The writings were the inspiration behind a new restaurant in downtown Marquette, a restaurant that promises cozy dining with a unique flair.

      It's been just over a week since the Rubaiyat opened its doors in Marquette. But owners Aza Wolfcale and Sherri Loonsfoot-Alrded have been cooking up the idea of opening the eatery for more than three years.

      "This is something we've been dreaming about for years and years and we should just try it and see what happens," said co-owner Aza Wolfcale.

      Serving up an exotic array of Mediterranean, Indian and Middle Eastern cuisine, the women say their menu is what sets them apart from other area restaurants.

      "We had a lot of faith that we had something a little bit different that's never been done before up here or at least not for awhile," Wolfcale commented.

      Of course, the current economy did play a part in their planning. To help save money, they do most of the cooking themselves and hired a smaller staff.

      "As far as what we wanted to put into it, we did it simple. We did a lot of the work ourselves. Family helped out, friends of ours helped build it, so that helped considerably," said fellow co-owner Sherri Loonsfoot-Aldred.

      And though it's only been a week, business has been steady. The two hope to soon expand their menu and experiment with new recipes.

      "We only have two or three dishes Indian right now, but that I would really like to expand a lot on. I would like to run daily or every other day specials to try new things," Loonsfoot-Aldred said.

      The Rubiayat is located on Baraga Ave. next to the Children's Museum.