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Kitchenware Chain Sur La Table Will Close Most of its SF Stores

Also: Tanya Holland launches a star-studded podcast, and more news to start your day

Businesses Board Up Stores During Coronavirus Outbreak
Five Bay Area locations of Sur La Table will close by September
Photo by Sarah Reingewirtz/MediaNews Group/Pasadena Star-News via Getty Images

Upscale cookware company Sur La Table will shut down five Bay Area stores in the next three months

For almost 50 years, Sur La Table, the Seattle-based kitchenware company known for its in-store cooking classes and ubiquity on wedding registries, has served shoppers in search of aspirational yet accessible baking tools, barware, and countertop appliances. But late Wednesday, the company announced that it had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. To dig themselves out of debt, the company announced, it would close 56 of its 112 stores across the U.S., including five of its Bay Area locations.

A new section of Sur La Table’s website is devoted to the closures, which directs users to its “find a store” function to see if a store near them will shutter. When one enters a San Francsico zip code, one learns that In San Francisco, the stores at 2224 Union Street and Westfield’s San Francisco Centre will close permanently “in August or September.” Its Ferry Building location, the map says, will remain open.

In Marin, the Corte Madera Town Center Sur La Table will also close, as will the Santa Clara Square shop in Santa Clara. In San Jose, the 378 Santana Row spot will also shut its doors. Folks who’ve been sitting on a Sur La Table purchase they aren’t happy with should take note: Spots that are closing won’t accept returns after August 7, and all purchases made during the shuttering stores’ liquidation sales are final.

And in other news...

  • State regulators cited Benicia’s Loft Wine Bar and Restaurant Wednesday, after they say “no employees or the owner were wearing face coverings” as they served customers. Owner Jason Diavitas admits that “at least four of his five staffers weren’t wearing masks,” but claims his workers have health issues that prevent face covering use. [KRON 4]
  • The House, a 26-year-old North Beach spot that served Asian fusion food, announced that it had closed for good Thursday. [SF Gate]
  • Nizario’s Pizza, a late-night slice shop with locations across San Francisco, announced on its website that its Castro spot has permanently closed. According to its owners, their lease expired at the end of April and “due to the COVID-19 situation, we couldn’t commit to a high monthly rent.” [Hoodline]
  • A Kickstarted brewery called Native Fermentations has opened in the former Santa Clara Valley Brewery facility in San Jose. They’ve got six beers available for takeout, four of which are IPAs. [East Bay Times]
  • Lower Nob Hill cocktail bar Stookey’s Club Moderne has temporarily rebranded as a cafe, serving menu items like red bean chili and potato salad. The operation is takeout only, and cocktails or bottled spirits are also available. [Hoodline]
  • Marina District gelato business GIO Gelati has launched a subscription service that delivers pints across the Bay Area. Prices start at $42 for a three-pint order. [San Jose Mercury News]
  • Bay Area food icon and Chez Panisse founder Alice Waters says “I don’t sue people easily. I don’t believe in it,” but that if her lawsuit against an insurance company that denied her business interruption claims prevails, “it will lift us all up.” [KPIX]
  • The Marin County Fair has been canceled, but those craving its corn dogs or funnel cakes are in luck, as vendors will offer those treats and more as a drive-thru this weekend and next. [ABC 7]
  • Tanya Holland, the owner of East Bay soul food spot Brown Sugar Kitchen, will launch a celebrity-heavy podcast on July 28. On the show, called “Tanya’s Table,” Holland will interview stars like Questlove, Alice Waters, Gina Torres, and Danny Meyer. [East Bay Times]