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Café Citti opens

Café Citti opens

Same old favorites and new fare too

By Paul Goguen

Many in our valley were saddened by the departure of Café Citti last year. The quaint Sonoma Highway location in Kenwood had become too dilapidated to function as a restaurant, devolving slowly to something just above shed status. The building owners wanted to renovate because the facilities were becoming, as an Italian might say, “ squallido.” It was time to make a move to a better location.

The good news is that fond memories of your favorite dish of pasta, lasagna, or roasted chicken can be relived at Café Citti’s new location just down the road in Santa Rosa.

The diminutive Italian eatery opened in downtown Kenwood on Oct. 29, 1990, and closed exactly 30 years later, on October 29, 2020 — apparently just a weird coincidence. Owner Linda Citti (be sure to pronounce both Ts) reflects on the decades in Kenwood: “When we first started, there were many Italians in Kenwood, and they came in for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. That, and the support of the wineries and businesses of the valley, whose employees frequented the restaurant, kept us going strong. Of course, there is nothing quite like having a full house of diners with the Kenwood Fire Department alert siren blaring right next door.”

The new space has “really nice heaters” and a quaint little patio with seven tables next to Santa Rosa Creek, right near where Sonoma Highway hangs a left onto Farmers Lane. As we previously reported, the reasons for leaving the Kenwood space were numerous, including the rotting building, unrealistic renovation turnaround time, PG& E’s public safety power shutoffs (PSPS), COVID-19, and the Glass fire, to name a few. The new location is a big improvement over the old, with better hood ventilation and an overall kitchen setup sure to yield delicious dishes prepared to go in a timely manner.

The Cittis are ready for hungry diners to return for some great Italian takeout. Most all of the old favorites are available, with some new fare as well. Café Citti is located at 2792 4th St. in Santa Rosa. Hours are 4:307:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.