Vincenti, Brentwood’s beloved Italian restaurant, has closed after 25 years
Vincenti, a 25-year-old Italian restaurant in Brentwood, closed last month, according to an announcement made on the restaurant’s website by owner Maureen Vincenti and chef Nicolo Mastronardi. The community facility and popular celebrity dining spot was considered one of the most charming neighborhood Italian restaurants in Los Angeles. Vincenti’s husband Mauro opened and operated the iconic Rex Il Ristorante, which played a role in the film A pretty woman. Mauro passed absent in 1996a year before the opening of the Vincenti Ristorante in Brentwood.
Maureen Vincenti tells The Hollywood Reporter that a rent increase of The business of Rick Caruso, the owner of the building, would have made the operation of the business untenable. Over the summer, Vincenti recounted THR that Caruso’s company allowed Vincenti to stay until a new tenant was found. They were also forgiven of a reduced rent of $1 million from the end of 2019, but did not renew the lease because the new rate would have been almost three times what they were paying before, according to a representative of Rick Caruso’s company. Vincenti speaks admirably of Caruso’s business despite rising rents. The Spanish tapas restaurant Teleféric takes over the space, according to blogger Toddrickallen. Those who lament the closure of Vincenti would be encouraged to know that Vincenti and Mastronardi are looking for a new location, ideally in Santa Monica.
Former waiter Ronit Menashe, sister of chef Ori Menashe of Bestia and Bavel, says Vincenti was the consummate butler and observed that much of the staff remained with the restaurant throughout his tenure in Brentwood . “It was a total neighborhood restaurant that felt like family. Customers came for their usual food every week,” says Menashe. “Maureen is such an amazing person. People went there for her. It was a happy place because of her.
Vincenti had its longtime regulars, but even newcomers succumbed to its charm. Recent LA transplants Elliott Higgins, an anesthetist, and her husband Tim Hermann, who works in tech, found themselves dining at Vincenti’s whenever they could. “They kissed you there. Maureen made you feel like you’ve been a loyal customer for decades, even though it was your first time there. And the food was amazing. We loved the pasta and the tartufo risotto was divine,” Higgins says. “We moved to Los Angeles six months ago, and it’s one of the first places we’ve been back to many times,” Hermann says. I’m new here, but you could tell this place was special to a lot of people.”