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Bernadette’s Crew Plans to Open a Fast-Casual Diner Next Year in Downtown LA

Buddy’s owners took over the shuttered Pestolini a few days ago, right next door to Bernadette’s

Buddy’s in Downtown LA
Jim VanBlaricum

The minds behind Downtown’s craft beer bar Bernadette’s call their new Downtown LA venture Buddy’s. They’ve also labeled it as a fast-casual diner, and it’s all right next door to their hip beer bar. Buddy’s is due to open in March 2019.

Owners Jim VanBlaricum and Michael Hentz own Bernadette’s, and the two plan to make Buddy’s a comfy 1960s/1970s throwback joint with wood accents and vintage style, just like the bar. The food is all about sandwiches, burgers, melts, salads, small bites, and a fried chicken sandwich called the Birdadette. Buddy’s will be open for lunch, dinner, and late night with a weekend brunch as the kitchen gets its bearings. Buddy’s will easily service hot food to Bernadette imbibers as well.

VanBlaricum and Hentz just applied for a beer and wine license, which they hope will be in place by next spring. The former Pestolini space is 2,200 square feet, and the duo expects a short turnaround with a deep-cleaning and facelift. The location is prime too, just one block away from Grand Central Market, and a hop-skip away from Bar Clacson and LGBTQ bar Precinct.

Buddy’s. 363 S. Broadway, Los Angeles, CA