This spring brought a rocky start for the Claremont Club & Spa’s relaunched restaurant Antoinette, the hotel’s collaboration with generally very successful power chef Dominique Crenn (Atelier Crenn, Petit Crenn). Crenn was brought on as a “curator” for the classically French restaurant, with chef Justin Mauz (Joel Robuchon at the Mansion) managing the kitchen day to day. One month after its splashy opening in February, Crenn parted ways with the restaurant (and Mauz moved on to Coi), and it was shuttered until further notice.
Now, per Berkeleyside, Antoinette will reopen as Limewood, a local, seasonally-dedicated restaurant, with chef Joseph Humphrey taking charge. Humphrey joined Limewood after a short-lived stint at Berkeley's The Advocate (as in, he only started in February), bringing experience from Mina Group, One Market, The Restaurant at Meadowood, and Auberge du Soleil. (In case you’re curious, lead sous chef Dan Hanken has taken over as The Advocate’s head chef.)
Now Humphrey will transfer all that experience over to Limewood, which plans to be more casual than Antoinette, and really embrace its East Bay location — down to naming the space after a local tree. The space itself — while just redesigned months ago for Antoinette — will debut with a new tile floor and different furniture. Limewood is on schedule to open late August.