Pasta Pomodoro, a San Bruno, Calif.-based Italian casual-dining chain, has closed its remaining 15 locations, according to local reports.
San Francisco area Fox affiliate KTVU reported that employees were notified via text message of the closures.
Pasta Pomodoro’s corporate headquarters did not respond to questions about the closures, and phones at several locations were disconnected.
Over the years, Pasta Pomodoro closed all of its locations outside of the San Francisco Bay Area. The chain reportedly shuttered all of its remaining locations on Dec. 26.
Pasta Pomodoro was founded in San Francisco, in 1994, by fine-dining chef Adriano Paganini. He received venture capital funding in 2000 from private-equity firm Dorset Capital Management.
In 2002, Wendy’s International Inc., then the parent company of the quick-service Wendy’s chain, took a minority stake in Pasta Pomodoro as part of a strategy to invest in non-burger brands.
Pasta Pomodoro grew to 46 units in northern and southern California, but struggled as the economy entered the recession.
At the end of 2009, Pasta Pomodoro, with 30 units at the time, was acquired by local investors Matthew Janopaul and Girish Satya, who attempted to revamp the chain with a new menu focused on local ingredients and a more authentic approach to food, with the intent to compete with neighborhood Italian restaurants.
According to Janopaul’s and Satya’s LinkedIn profiles, they sold the chain to an unnamed private-equity firm in July 2012.
That firm hired industry veteran David Wallace as president and chief operating officer. Wallace, whose resume includes operations jobs at Bertucci’s, Don Pablo’s and TGI Fridays, took ownership of the company in June 2016, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Contact Bret Thorn at [email protected]
Follow him on Twitter: @foodwriterdiary