Cafe Gratitude has closed its Arts District location after eight years; the final day of service was February 26. The move comes on the heels of the group’s San Diego closure last month, leaving Larchmont, Venice, and Newport Beach as the only Cafe Gratitude locations in Southern California. The company does still operate Gracias Madre as well, in West Hollywood and in Newport Beach. The Arts District space, which opened in August 2014, predated many of the neighborhood’s hottest nearby restaurants by years, including Camphor, Manuela, and Bavel.
“It has been an incredible eight years and we want to express our heartfelt gratitude to the DTLA community that has supported us, and the dedicated team members who joined in our mission to create a healthier, more vibrant world through the simple pleasures of plant-based nutrition,” the company says in a statement to Eater LA.
An Al Fresco update
After receiving hundreds of messages from diners and business owners regarding regulation changes to LA’s Al Fresco program, the city of Los Angeles is now working to “create a permanent program that incorporates everything that made the temporary program successful, including a simple application process and straightforward approval pathway,” per a statement sent out to media last week. “Revisions are underway that will focus on creating a simple and streamlined process for current Al Fresco participants,” the statement continues. “In response to comments received, staff is also evaluating modifications to the draft ordinance that will address parking lot requirements, operations, permitting compliance, alcohol authorization, and more. The Department anticipates releasing a revised Ordinance at the end of March.”
New openings on the Eastside
Burritos La Palma is now open in Highland Park, taking over the kitchen area inside La Tropicana Market at 5200 Monte Vista Street to sell signature flour tortilla burritos and other goods. Hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.
New direction, familiar address
Venice’s Chez Tex space is flipping to a new name and concept, to be called Bar Coucou. The forthcoming Main Street restaurant will still see Chez Tex owners Jesse and Hayley Feldman on as owners in partnership with executive chef Jacob Wetherington (Bouchon, Farmshop). The Feldmans had originally planned to partner with the Crudo e Nudo team to open a new restaurant at the address, but that deal has since been called off. Expect a more drinks-focused approach and food cooked over live fire (including a vegetarian take on a French dip using coal-baked root vegetables) when Bar Coucou opens next month instead.