Berkeley’s Famed Chez Panisse Re-Opens After Fire

The legendary restaurant re-opens Monday after a damaging fire

About four months ago, the culinary world was shocked to learn that Chez Panisse, chef Alice Waters’ Berkeley landmark and a touchstone for the ‘farm-to-table’ movement, had been damaged by a fire that started under its porch. After an extensive repair, it’s finally back in business, hosting a $2,500/head fundraiser on Friday night for her Edible Schoolyard Project on Friday night and re-opening to the public on Monday, June 24.

In the early morning hours of March 8th, a fire ripped through the front porch of the legendary restaurant, which opened in 1971 and is widely accepted as being one of the first restaurants to sing the merits of local, organic food instead of imported goods. The restaurant is consistently ranked among the country’s best, and is one of the Daily Meal’s perennial best restaurants in America. If a sprinkler system that was installed inside the restaurant hadn’t stopped the fire, the entire building could have burned to the ground.

When the restaurant re-opens on Monday evening, the $65 prix-fixe menu will include green bean and roasted sweet pepper salad, bouillabaisse with shellfish, and Santa Rosa plum galette with wild fennel ice cream.

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