Chef Celinda calls it quits
The restaurant business is a tough one, and the Madison Park audience doesn't make the situation any easier for a restauranteur. After almost three years of struggle to hit the right notes, chef/proprietor Celinda Norton has decided to give it up. In an email to patrons sent early this morning, Norton writes "the time has come to bid you a farewell...Despite working seven days a week, since 2011, cooking every meal myself, the business continues to be ‘economically challenged’. It is time to seek other avenues to satisfy my need to create great food."
As Madison Park's only Italian restaurant, Cafe Parco occupied the space that for many years housed Karen Binder's French-themed Madison Park Cafe (1807 42nd Avenue E.). Binder is the property's landlord and will again have the task of finding a tenant, as she did after closing her own restaurant three years ago. The onetime private residence is difficult space for a restaurant to operate in because it has a very small kitchen (which is in need of renovation) and limited interior seating, among other factors.
It is always sad to see a neighborhood business fail, sad for both the business's patrons and for the many of us who care about maintaining a 'critical mass' within the Village's business community. We wish the hard-working Chef Celinda and her son, Nic, well in whatever their futures hold.
Seeing Cafe Parco close, however, reminds us of the old adage, "When one door closes, another opens." Ironically, our intended posting today was about the two new neighborhood restaurants that plan to open their doors later this month.
We'll have the details tomorrow.
[Photo by S. Pratt for Seattle Eater.]