There have been plenty of changes of late in the Madison restaurant landscape. And while some spots seem destined to stay empty, there seems to be no difficulty getting new ventures into other prime locations.
Cafe Porta Alba, the Neapolitan kitchen formerly located at 15 N. Butler St., is reportedly looking for a new location. And due to a flurry of closings, there are spaces available. Prairie Bean Coffee at 5500 E. Cheryl Parkway in Fitchburg has closed. The former Crave Restaurant and Lounge spot at 201 W. Gorham is available, as is the former A Place for Friends on Sherman Avenue. The White Horse Inn space and Fyfe's Corner Bistro spaces are still empty. How about the old Tumbleweeds Grill building on East Washington Avenue? Tony Roma's of Fitchburg? Or the spot formerly housing Delitalia, 7854 W. Mineral Point Rd.?
But several empty spaces have prospective new tenants...including the 15 N. Butler space just vacated by Cafe Porta Alba. Representatives of a restaurant to be known as Old Market Bistro will be appearing before the ALRC April 15 to request a class B liquor and beer license. For the record, this is not the same project known as Old Market Bistro and Bakery proposed in 2006 for 305 East Johnson Street.
The space formerly occupied by the Angelic Brewing Company, 322 W. Johnson St., is slated to be filled by Logan's. During the March Alcohol License and Review Committee meeting, the committee approved motions for restrictions at Logan's that seemed intent on making sure campus-area drinking and crowds will not get out of hand and stemming under-age drinking: "Interior capacity of 300 persons Sunday through Wednesday, 395 Thursday through Saturday, with 100 additional persons on the patio area; establishment must meet the definition of a restaurant as defined by MGO 38.02; must provide full food service at all times; agree to stop alcohol service 30 minutes prior to bartime; utilization of a scanner after 10:00 p.m."
A hand-written sign in the window announces a Vietnamese restaurant is coming to the former Bab's French Quarter Kitchen space, 1353 Williamson St.
Cafe Espresso Royale will be opening in the Cafe Zoma space at 2326 Atwood Ave., around May 1. Bunky's on Atwood Avenue will be reopening possibly by the end of April in the former Goodman Atwood Community Center building, 2717 Atwood, while its old space at 2827 Atwood will be occupied by a new venture, Daisy Cafe, serving breakfast and lunch.
The Dining Room at 209 Main, the innovative kitchen in Monticello, Wisconsin, has been closed since April 5 and will reopen this Friday, April 17, with a new spring menu.