Opening Date Announced for Little Saint in Healdsburg

Plant-based cafe and restaurant in the former Healdsburg SHED space is on the horizon.

The long wait for Little Saint, a new food, arts, music and community space at the former Healdsburg SHED, may soon be over.

The owners of the 10,000-square-foot multi-purpose building in downtown Healdsburg announced in a press release Wednesday that they anticipate opening Little Saint in February 2022. (It was previously slated to open this fall, but the pandemic and subsequent supply chain disruptions delayed the opening.)

Little Saint will include a plant-based cafe, restaurant and wine shop from Kyle and Katina Connaughton of three Michelin-starred Single Thread restaurant. Staff for the new cafe and restaurant was also announced today: Former SHED Chef de Cuisine Bryan Oliver is reprising his role in the kitchen; Rusty Rastello, whose team recently won the Wine Spectator Grand Award at Single Thread, will be Executive Wine Director; and Akeel Shah, Service Director at Single Thread, will be the General Manager.

SHED, the “modern grange” envisioned and built by Doug Lipton and Cindy Daniel, closed in late 2018. The two-story building then remained unoccupied for nearly two years. Following numerous rumors of new ownership, the property was ultimately purchased by Healdsburg investors Jeff and Laurie Ubben in September 2020. Kyle and Katina Connaughton were tapped to oversee the meat-free menu and the wine program, using produce from Little Saint’s farm as well as their own 24-acre Single Thread farm in Dry Creek Valley for the restaurant’s seasonal dishes.

“We want to build upon Cindy Daniel and Doug Lipton’s vision of creating a community gathering space when they first opened Healdsburg SHED,” said Kyle Connaughton earlier this year. “We envision Little Saint as another way to express our culinary creativity in a more accessible manner and as another avenue to expand our agricultural footprint and biodiversity presence in Sonoma County,” he added.

Produce from the new Single Thread farm in Dry Creek Valley will be a focus of the restaurant at Little Saint. (John Troxell)
Produce from the new Single Thread farm in Dry Creek Valley will be a focus of the restaurant at Little Saint. (Photo: John Troxell)

Designer Ken Fulk of San Francisco nonprofit Saint Joseph’s Arts Foundation will bring the Little Saint interior to life and create programming with Director Jenny Hess. The expansive Healdsburg space will also be used as a gathering place for conversations with thought leaders, as well as for live music performances and events.

Other staff announcements for Little Saint include Kelly Buteyn, Assistant General Manager; Celeste Peralez, Executive Sous Chef; Matthew Seigel, Executive Bar Director; and Alexandria Sarovich, Wine Director.