Mangia Italiano to Close -- For Twelve Days

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Last week, our local Internets were abuzz with the (false) news that Mangia Italiano, beloved Southside eatery, music venue and arguably one of the best 3 a.m. bars in town, was closing. The rumors were half-true: They are closing, but only for twelve days. You'll have to find your pappardelle and PBR fix elsewhere until January 12.

Rose Bland, who tends bar at Mangia, said the bar/restaurant/venue will reopen under new management. In addition, the restaurant will receive some cosmetic updates -- including a full, permanent patio on the southerly side of the building where an alley currently is.

"I really love this place, and I want to see it grow," Bland says. "From what I understand from the new owners, it's kind of a necessity to close [temporarily]. [But] it's not an emergency closing or anything, it's just what we gotta do."

New owners James Bonsanti and Collier Evans could not be reached for comment. However, Bland notes that Mangia's patrons can expect a few minor changes in 2011.

"We're going to keep our current chef until about March, and then we'll probably do a menu change, and have our new owner James go back there and take charge of things," she says. "We're going to keep most of our staff unless anyone chooses not to come back, but we shouldn't have too many strange faces around when we reopen."

Adds Bland: "We're all really looking forward to it, [to] get some new ideas in here. It's not the end of anything -- it's the end of an era I guess, but this is the fourth owner of the restaurant, so it's nothing new."

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