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Walter Manzke to open République in downtown Arts District

August 22, 2011 |  4:52 pm

Factoryplace

For the hungry, downtown keeps getting better and better. Chef Walter Manzke and his wife, Margarita Manzke, announced they have signed a lease to open République restaurant as well as a bakery, Factory Baking Co., in the Factory Place Arts Complex (just north of 6th Street and east of Alameda).

The name of the planned 140-seat restaurant is an homage to the city's Right Bank neighborhood and its burgeoning restaurants. The Manzkes took several Paris trips that included visits to restaurants such as Le Comptoir, Chateaubriand, Spring, Frenchie and Chez Dumonet.  

"I think these places are in tune with a broader dining trend on a national level, but especially in L.A. where we arguably defined the art of casually elegant dining," says Walter Manzke via email (he is otherwise observing a quiet period during his investor offering at the behest of his lawyer, according to a spokeswoman). 

"The bistronomy movement has found its soul and best expression in similar industrial venues, and Margarita and I have always loved downtown, especially the Arts District as a destination where different, emerging ideas are celebrated." 

The menu will feature dishes for both fine and casual dining. The dining room will be between the open kitchen and the bar area. There also will be patio seating and a private dining room.

No word yet on the architect. The Arts District location is 8,000 square feet, and because it's a warehouse built in the 1920s (see above), expect "post-industrial urban and re-purposed interiors with both modern and vintage elements," per a release. "The building is such an iconic location with both a modern and vintage feel to it and those elements resonate with our concept," Walter adds.

Factory Baking Co. will offer freshly baked croissants and pastries, coffee, salads and sandwiches, breads, charcuterie and light dinner options. Seating at Factory Baking Co. will be interspersed with retail displays of curated products used at the café and République such as olive oils, wines and cheeses. 

"There is some great residential real estate in the Arts District, and we wanted to offer our neighbors both an accessible place to eat and shop for good products," Walter says. 

1330 Factory Place, Los Angeles.

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-- Betty Hallock

Photo credit: Factory Place Arts Complex 

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