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Plywood Special: Panta Rei's Expansion (And Its Worth)

North Beach: On the surface, odds are that the approved expansion of Panta Rei into the old shoe repair shop next door on Columbus Avenue probably won't have much of an impact on the local dining scene. The Panta Rei people describe the space—which is hoped to formally debut in two to three weeks—as a salotto (neighborhood gathering place), using it for special events, dining room spillover, and mostly, a spot to sit and have a drink. However, the bigger impact may be on North Beach as a whole. It took a solid year and a half for Panta Rei to get a conditional use permit, but it was finally granted. Along with the arrival of Swirl Culture up the street last month, some are now saying that the tide might be shifting in North Beach, a neighborhood where it's been famously difficult for new restaurants to gain approval (libraries too). Could the times be a-changing?
· EaterWire: Panta Rei Expanding [~ESF~]