After 20 years of serving pizzas and Italian fare in the heart of Edgartown, Lattanzi’s Restaurant is closed for business.
“We’ve decided to turn another chapter and relax a little bit in our silver years,” owner Albert Lattanzi told the Gazette Tuesday.
The buyer is Island Realty Trust, and one of the trustees is John A. Roberts 3rd of Island Food Products. The sale price was $1.75 million. The 4,100-square-foot multi-level building fronts the town parking lot in Post Office Square on one side and Church street on the other side.
“We are very excited to invest in another property in downtown Edgartown that has a great history and a tradition of great restaurants,” Mr. Roberts told the Gazette Wednesday. The group also owns the Eleven North restaurant on North Water street and the building that houses Sharky’s Cantina on Upper Main street.
He said the group has reached a deal with an unnamed Island restaurateur to run a traditional family-style Italian restaurant that will be open throughout the year. “We are very much committed to the community and offering affordable menu items and being open year-round,” Mr. Roberts said.
He said the restaurant will offer a wide variety of traditional Italian food. He said there will be an announcement soon about who will be running the restaurant, and he said it is someone who is already operating a restaurant on the Island.
Mr. Roberts said the restaurant will be renovated but the general structure won’t be altered. The new restaurant, like Lattanzi’s, will continue to have a fine dining area and a pizza area. Mr. Roberts said there will be an expansion of the takeout area, with more products offered to go. He said the restaurant should be reopened by early spring.
“We congratulate the Lattanzis on a great run there and wish them the best,” Mr. Roberts said.
The restaurant’s last day of business was Tuesday, Nov. 26.
“It’s very bittersweet because we love our customers and we love making pizzas for them,” Mr. Lattanzi said. Mr. Lattanzi had operated the business for the last 20 years, and before that he worked at Andrea’s, a restaurant that is today Atria.
“The customers were always appreciated and we’re going to miss them the most,” he said.
Mr. Lattanzi said he and his wife Cathy plan to travel and relax. “It’s been 30 years since I’ve been to a Fourth of July party, you know what I’m saying,” Mr. Lattanzi said. “It’ll be nice to kind of have the summers off a little bit. We’re just looking forward to enjoying our Island.”
He said he’s loved running the restaurant and working with summer employees from around the world, but “it’s come time to learn how to run a fishing boat.”
Mr. Lattanzi will also continue to be involved in the local Wild Food Challenge, which tasks residents with creating a dish with at least one wild ingredient. Mr. Lattanzi has served as a judge at the competition, which takes place on the Vineyard and other locations around the world. In the next year, he said, the challenge will take him to Maui, France, Italy, Finland, and New Zealand.
Mr. Lattanzi said he hopes to be involved in other ventures on the Island, including working with the council on aging and Boys’ and Girls’ Club.
The restaurant will have a tag sale in the coming weeks to sell wine glasses, dishes, silverware and used restaurant equipment. “I don’t need 90 to 100 wine glasses at my house,” Mr. Lattanzi said, noting there will be inexpensive goods and free items. “I’ve got pickle buckets. If any of the fishermen want to come by there will be deals to be had.”
“So many wonderful people . . . celebrities, dignitaries, it’s been a wonderful journey as far as that goes,” Mr. Lattanzi said. “It’s like the Seinfeld show. As much as we all loved it, it went out on top. And we were hoping to do the same thing.”