We’ve heard some super-sad news from Sebastopol: Food Mechanic is closing. The cafe, owned by Shane Dykhuis and Anne Zuelke, served healthy soups and salads, along with some darn good cookies and collagen “jigglers,” made with juice and beef gelatin. To say that their smoked chicken salad was my very, very favorite in the whole wide world is not an exaggeration. On one of my hard days as I worked to get food to first responders and evacuees during the Kincade fire, that salad pretty much saved my bacon and my sanity.
“We’ve muscled through major challenges like wildfires and the ongoing pandemic, but these slowed down our momentum during critical growth periods and we’ve simply run out of time and resources to continue on in this capacity,” the couple said on Facebook in an announcement about the closure.
I’m heartbroken that they’ll be moving on, but we hope they’ll pop up soon in another spot. Open until March 26, 980 Gravenstein Hwy., Sebastopol, foodmechanic.com.
Madrona Manor makeover
The historic Healdsburg mansion and its restaurant will be closed for several months for a remodel after being acquired by an investment group headed by designer Jay Jeffers of St. Helena, Kyle Jeffers and Cory Schisler (see renderings of the remodel in the above gallery). What we’re interested in is the Michelin-starred restaurant run by Chef Jesse Mallgren, who will stay on when the property reopens under a new name, The Madrona. The restaurant will be a more casual spot than its former white-tablecloth incarnation, Jay Jeffers said.
Cafe Citti update
After months of waiting, Cafe Citti has received its much-anticipated building permit and hopes to open soon in its new location at 2792 Fourth St. in Santa Rosa. Luca and Linda Citti, owners of the popular Italian eatery, said last fall they planned to move for several reasons, including the need for renovations at the Kenwood building, power outages and the Glass fire that burned through parts of Kenwood.
Of course, the biggest news is that Sonoma County has reached the much-anticipated red tier, which means restaurants can have indoor dining at 25% of their capacity. While we’re still quite happy outdoors in this lovely weather, it’s nice to know that we’ll be able to head inside — especially after getting our second vaccine dose!