It looks like roving reporter Toddrickallen may have inadvertently struck upon something big going down in Santa Monica. The sharp-eyed Westsider spotted a bit of permitting on Wilshire Boulevard recently, attached to a space between a Hillstone restaurant and a California Pizza Kitchen. Well, through some clever digging, it appears that the permit is being requested by none other than the Fig & Olive corporation, though it’s not (as of this very moment, at least) being billed as a straight up Fig & Olive restaurant extension just yet.
At first blush, the so-called name of the Wilshire space is said to be Santa Monica Farmhouse. That doesn’t turn up much right away (and there’s no ABC license for that name yet), but through a few weaves and bobs you come to Luxury Dining Group LLC. That LLC is then tied to a whole bunch of other ‘Farmhouse’ names, in cities like San Francisco, Miami, Brooklyn, Washington DC, and Manhattan. It also points (eventually) to an address in New York City that, ding ding ding, just happens to be the corporate offices for Fig & Olive.
So what exactly is this new expansion-able ‘Farmhouse’ concept that the Fig & Olive folks are hoping to try out? They aren’t saying, offering a strong "no comment" instead, but it would certainly seem to be a shade different than their current upscale Fig & Olive restaurant offerings. That would probably be smart right now anyway, considering all the hot water the restaurant group has been in recently over allegations of salmonella in their commissary kitchen and a near-complete shutdown of the West Hollywood location by the health department.
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