T.S. Eliot may have said, “April is the cruellest month,” but for the restaurant industry, it has to be January. With the end of holiday parties and a typically slow beginning of the year, plus looming taxes, it’s when a lot of places decide to throw in the towel and call it quits. I was sorry to come home to such a long list of restaurant closures, including ~POLENG LOUNGE~ (damn damn damn); VIVANDE PORTA VIA (heck, no more of my favorite eggplant sandwiches—I loved that snack); CAFE MARITIME (I’m hoping Mark Micheltree pops up elsewhere as promised with his chowder and coconut cream pie); ~CONDUIT~ (here’s wishing the talented team all the best); SHANGHAI 1930 (although it seems George Chen is potentially opening a project at 101 California); COTE SUD in the Castro (replaced by a place called Curry Boyzz, cough); ~MI LINDO YUCATAN~ (I was a fan of their cochinita pibil); and CARTE415 has also been parked.
And then there’s the news that the truly infamous 24-hour PINECREST DINER has its windows papered over—I was wondering if it was truly kaput, because the number is still connected, but I didn’t get a call back. (This just in: Eater reports it’s just closed for a quick remodel.)