I hate to be the bringer of bad news, but after going to pick up an almond macaroon at one of my favorite places for food in the Bay Area, I learned that Phoenix Pastificio is going to be closing in two and a half weeks. If you don't know this place, I highly recommend going for lunch to have any of their 30-50 amazing pastas--from meyer lemon to jalapeno cocoa--some nice wine (cheap by the glass), and some of the best baked breads and pastries that you can find. The restaurant is open Monday through Saturday from 11:30-2:30 and the pasta/bakery retail side is open Monday to Saturday from 7am-8pm (and sometimes a bit later).
Supposedly due to the recently opened set of apartment buildings across the street, the landlord of their current location at 1786 Shattuck Ave. between Delaware and Francisco decided that he/she could now rent the shop for more money than Phoenix could afford. Maybe the landlord wanted them out regardless, maybe not. Who knows. They are moving to a new, smaller location on University Ave., closer to the Bay, where they will only be making pasta for wholesale. They say that they will continue to sell at the different farmers markets in the area where they currently sell their stuff, but they would shut down their in-store retail and restaurant.
I'm not sure if there's anything we can do to keep the restaurant open in some way, shape, or form, but with the Berkeley community able to keep Nabolom Bakery in Elmwood up and running last fall, maybe it's possible to do the same here. Spread the word, if you're a fan, and hopefully a local paper will pick up this story and do some more serious research on the issue. It would be a shame to lose not only one of the places that serves fantastic food for not that much money, but one with such a laid-back atmosphere that doesn't hide the messiness, disorder, and excitement that comes from running a restaurant, shop, bakery, and pastificio all under one roof. It's rare to find a place in Berkeley where you find students--both undergraduate and graduate--Cal faculty and staff, and locals all eating together. We will see, I guess...
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