You may recall hearing the news that longtime Delfina chef de cuisine Matt Gandin left his post a few months back to pursue his own restaurant project ("possibly Mexican food," said former boss Craig Stoll at the time). Well, now we get wind via the Scoop that Gandin is indeed working on a rather huge Mexican restaurant on Shattuck Avenue in Berkeley called Comal, which will focus on food from Oaxaca and the nearby southwestern coast of Mexico.
The space will have 140 seats in total, and owner John Paluska (who was Phish's band manager for 20 years, by the way) promises to create "a cultural incubator where locals converge a community hub."
There will also be a bar program from the Bon Vivants (Josh Harris and Scott Baird), and architects Abueg Morris promise it will be "a striking architectural piece of work," featuring dramatic, custom-designed COR-TEN steel
doors and windows, and a covered patio.
They're aiming for a mid-2012 opening, and Comal is currently under construction.
Comal - 2020 Shattuck Avenue at University - Opening in mid-2012
Comal bringing Mexican fare to downtown Berkeley; chef Matt Gandin (and others) aboard [Scoop]
Earlier: Chef Shuffle at Delfina: Dylan Montano to Replace Matt Gandin as Chef de Cuisine
Rick Bayless Calls Tijuana ‘One of the Great Food Cities of North America’