The doors are open!
Well, just a crack. But Bastide, in its new incarnation with Walter Manzke as chef and his wife, Margarita, as pastry chef, will open its doors for dinner Wednesday, Sept. 5. Call the reservation line right now and you'll still get a recording saying the restaurant is closed for maintenance and renovations, but publicist Joan Luther says the phone line should be open for business sometime today.
This is Bastide's third incarnation. It opened in late 2002 with Alain Giraud as chef; Times restaurant critic S. Irene Virbila gave the restaurant four stars when she reviewed it three months later. In the spring of 2004, Giraud left in a dispute with owner Joe Pytka, and Pytka brought in chef Ludovic Lefebvre to replace him. A one-star review followed in The Times. Lefrebvre resigned in September of last year, frustrated, he said, that Pytka wouldn't approve recipes he had been developing for months.
It remains to be seen what the menu will be like under Manzke. And although Pytka has said the restaurant will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, it's dinner only for the time being.
Bastide, 8475 Melrose Place, (323) 651-5950.
-- Leslie Brenner
Photo by Bryan Chan