Chef Ari Weiswasser of the critically acclaimed Glen Ellen Star will open Stella restaurant at the former Cafe Citti location in Kenwood
The Glen Ellen chef has leased the recently overhauled 9049 Sonoma Highway building that served as a community hub and casual favorite of nearby winemakers for decades.
“Right now, Kenwood is very underserved in this corridor, and Sonoma Valley is ready for a new concept that will be accessible to Oakmont and Santa Rosa,” Weiswasser said.
After the departure of Cafe Citti in 2020 (now relocated to 2792 Fourth St. in Santa Rosa), the iconic building underwent a down-to-the-studs renovation.
“When you step into a location that the community loved, it’s important to honor that. But we’re also excited to explore our own evolution,” he said.
The forthcoming restaurant will have an open kitchen and wood-fired grill, much like Glen Ellen Star, but will be “leaning into its pasta game” with part of the menu dedicated to housemade pastas, according to Weiswasser. He added that Glen Ellen Star Chef de Cuisine Bryant Minuche will help create the new menu.
“I see a lot of activity happening in Napa and Healdsburg, and I think it’s nice to have some new concepts and energy in Sonoma,” Weiswasser said.
The restaurant will join Golden Bear Station, a new restaurant slated to open in late 2023 from the owners of the critically acclaimed Animo, in a slowly evolving revitalization of the small Sonoma Valley town.