After being closed for remodeling for the past several months, local restaurant Maria’s Italian Kitchen will be returning soon to its Brentwood stomping grounds from its temporary Santa Monica pop-up location.
Its return to the neighborhood will likely also come a new beer/wine license, which the restaurant did not formerly possess. With several locations throughout the greater Los Angeles area, the Brentwood location at 11723 Barrington Court is the last and only Maria’s Italian Kitchen that does not currently have a liquor license.
According to Raymond Klein, head of Brentwood Community Council (BCC)’s public safety committee, there will be an imminent hearing in regards to the current status of the restaurant’s acquirement of a beer/wine license.
“There will be a public hearing soon before a City Zoning Administrator on the application for a Conditional Use Permit to sell beer and wine, and upon grant of the permit, the State Alcoholic Beverage Control is expected to issue a Conditional License,” Klein said.
The Italian restaurant has already discussed some license-related matters with the BCC.
“Maria’s met with the Land Use Committee of the BCC and reached agreement on the list of conditions usually requested by the LAPD that the Police Department says will assist it ‘in maintaining the quality of life of the surrounding residential and business communities,’” Klein said.
Fausto Sanchez, assistant manager of Maria’s Italian Kitchen’s West L.A. branch, explained that the motives behind acquiring a beer/wine license derived from simply observing what the guests desired. Sanchez previously worked at the restaurant’s Brentwood location.
“Most of our clientele would ideally enjoy a glass of wine with their meal, as it fits well with Italian food,” Sanchez explained. “A big number of guests actually have just left after asking for alcohol and discovering that alcohol is not served [at the Brentwood location].”
Rafael Chavez, manager of Maria’s Italian Kitchen’s Brentwood branch, agreed that the beer/wine license “would accommodate well” to the customers’ needs. Chavez has served as manager of the Brentwood location for the past ten years.
“The staff is excited to go back to Brentwood and going back to normal,” Chavez said. “We’re all looking forward to returning.”
Maria’s Italian Kitchen originally debuted in 1975 as a take-out restaurant in Brentwood Village. The restaurants are currently owned by Maria’s daughter, Madelyn Alfano.
According to Sanchez, much of the “local clientele has known [owner] Madelyn” for over 20 years.
In addition to the close-knit relationship with the restaurant staff, the popularity of Maria’s Italian Kitchen can also be attributed to the quality and cost of its fare.
“Among the multitude of Italian restaurants in Brentwood, I think Maria’s niche is reasonably priced food for delivery and take-out, particularly pizza, although there will be about 42 seats in the latest incarnation of Maria’s,” Klein said.
Sanchez said that the remodeling process was primarily for aesthetic purposes and to “update the restaurant.”
Maria’s Italian Kitchen is expected to return to Brentwood by next month.
For more information on Maria’s Italian Kitchen, visit mariasitaliankitchen.com.