Restaurant news: Campanile loses lease, will close *

* Post updated below

campanile-1932.jpgThe owner of the La Brea Avenue building that houses Campanile is close to signing a long term lease for a new restaurant, Republique, the LA Times food blog reports. Mark Peel, the chef who owns Campanile, gives nothing away in his quotes: "No deal has been signed, not yet. Campanile is open today, it will be open tomorrow, we have weddings booked in October."

The building is owned by Larry Silverton, the father of Peel's ex-wife and former partner, Nancy Silverton. The LAT says Republique would be a partnership between chef Walter Manzke and restaurateur Bill Chait.

Rumors have been circulating for several months about the possible closure of Campanile, but discussions and negotiations have been ongoing....Manzke, Chait and Peel's former father-in-law, Larry Silverton, who owns the building that houses Campanile, say they are close to signing a deal on a new long-term lease. Meanwhile, Campanile chef-owner Peel is negotiating with Chait and Manzke to sell the restaurant business.

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Manzke, the chef who garnered a four-star review from the Los Angeles Times during his tenure at the erstwhile Bastide and catapulted downtown’s Church & State to gastronomic popularity, is currently in Manila overseeing his latest project, Wild Flour, with his wife, pastry chef Margarita Manzke.

But in an interview last week about Republique replacing Campanile, he said, “Campanile is an unbelievable space — the history that it has, memories, good times. So many people in L.A. have been there and have had wonderful experiences. It is such an honor to take over something like that and be half as great.”

Campanile has been a major player on the Los Angeles food scene since it opened 23 years ago.

9-21 update: Chait and Manzke sealed a deal late Wednesday night to take over the space with plans to install Manzke's envisioned bistro and bakery, Republique, in its place, the LA Times reports. Campanile is expected to close Nov. 30.


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