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Fans of Montecito’s habit-forming kale salad, famed roast chicken and kitschy yet delicious Stay Puft Marshmallow Man baked Alaska will have to look elsewhere to satisfy their cravings. The restaurant announced yesterday on social media that it has closed its doors due to COVID-related financial uncertainty.
Opened in 2014, Montecito Restaurant brought California-inspired farm-to-table cooking by famed chef Jonathan Waxman to the Entertainment District. The huge restaurant boasted soaring ceilings and 400 seats spread across two floors, a swish lounge and roomy patio. The décor was a mash-up of Hollywood paraphernalia linked to owner Ivan Reitman’s directorial days and modern, minimalist, California cool.
In the heart of the Entertainment District, and thanks to its Hollywood connections, Montecito quickly became a TIFF darling, hosting a slew of premiere parties during its short lifetime.
Despite its popularity, Montecito is now another victim of the ongoing pandemic. “Due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic along with the financial impact that has come along with the forced closures of indoor dining,” reads a message posted to the restaurant’s Instagram account and website, “we have made the decision to discontinue our operations at Montecito.” The restaurant shuttered for good on November 10. For the time being, the Montecito Bottle Shop will continue operations.
There’s no mention in the restaurant’s message of reopening, so whether diners can ever revisit Montecito’s signature dishes remains to be seen.
“Thank you for an incredible 6 + years," reads the message in conclusion. "We wish you and your loved ones health and happiness during these challenging times.”