The Mystery of White & Church

“White & Church has been closed the last couple of nights,” emailed Alan just now. “Wonder if it is going to reopen at all. They lost their bartender/mixologist a month ago and changed the format of the restaurant after her departure. Any word on the street?”

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked by and wondered whether it had closed. During the day, there’s an eerie air of quiet around it. But this time appears more serious. while the phone still works—an outgoing message says the usual stuff—the website is down.

The restaurant had a roller-coaster ride, starting high as Il Matto with a two-star review by the New York Times, but feeling the need to reinvent itself—causing concern with neighbors—as White & Church, more of a bar with food (and creative cocktails that incorporated ingredients such as insects).

I ran up to see: There were no signs of distress. Someone at a nearby business said that White & Church’s owners have been trying to sell, and were close to a deal, but it wasn’t signed. I was told that the restaurant has been open now and then for two or three hours at a time.

I emailed chef and co-owner Matteo Boglione to ask for details, but he hasn’t historically been responsive, and if there’s a PR contact, I don’t know it. Obviously I’ll update this when I learn more; feel free to email me with any news.

UPDATE: No one answered the phone tonight (10/11).

UDPATE 10/13: I just heard from Matteo, who emailed this: “i’m still open but just as bar, people understand this place as a bar more than restaurant, plus my hours are from 5 pm to 11 and if i have business i keep open till 1 am.”

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