Lori Baker and Jeffrey Banker are closing their eponymous restaurant after five years in business, reports Inside Scoop. The couple, whose second child was born last year, have cited the need to spend more time with their growing family as the primary reason for closing up shop; the ongoing local cook shortage apparently didn't help matters, either. A new restaurant tenant is apparently already lined up for the space at 1701 Octavia, which was Quince's home base before its move to Jackson Square. While the restaurant is no more, the couple aren't ready to retire from the restaurant industry quite yet. "We're definitely going to do something else, I just need to take a deep breath," Banker told Inside Scoop. Right now, their only plans include some time to take a "step back and re-evaluate."
Since opening in 2009, Baker & Banker has been a Lower Pac Heights destination, with Baker in charge of sweets and the bakery, and Banker handling the savory menu. The restaurant won critical acclaim early on, including a three-star Bauer rating, but took a Bauer drubbing last year, dropping to 2.5 stars (and two for food) and being labeled "a bit tired." Up until last year, a separate bakery overseen by Baker operated at the back of the restaurant, but it closed in order to move to a bigger space, and make room for a chef's table that was subsequently named the best in the Bay Area by Gayot.com. The bakery has yet to find another home, but that's no doubt one project that Baker and Banker have in mind, after they engage in some much-needed family bonding time. For those who want to say their goodbyes, they'll be open until Sunday, October 19.
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