Fans of the organic, vegan fine dining experience at Millennium in the Tenderloin are going to weep over this one: The restaurant announced this morning that they're being forced to close after 21 years at 580 Geary Street. This brings to an end, at least temporarily, a lengthy era of creative, plant-based cuisine for chef Eric Tucker, who's authored two cookbooks in that time as well, The Artful Vegan, and The Millennium Cook Book. But Tucker says, along with partner and general manager Alison Bagby, "We want to keep this thing going," and they are now seeking investors in order to relocate and reopen. They're leaning, he says, toward the East Bay.
"The cost of running a restaurant in San Francisco, using the best ingredients possible and making the entire menu from scratch daily, combined with our shared affinity for the East Bay have us leaning in that direction but we are also actively looking in San Francisco," they say. A Kickstarter campaign is forthcoming. The owners of the restaurant since 1994, Larry and Ann Wheat, say they have decided to retire from the business.
The culprit in the closure, it turns out, is a new hotel company that recently purchased the Hotel California, which the restaurant calls home. Seattle-based Pineapple Hospitality is said to be disinterested in using the space for a restaurant any longer though that sounds like it could be subject to change once this restaurant leaves.
Millennium, meanwhile, has a few more months of vegan birthdays, Valentine's, and wedding celebrations left, and they're currently saying the closing date will be on or around April 30, 2015.
Interested investors are asked to contact them at [email protected].
Sidebar: This news follows on yesterday's news about Source, the four-year-old vegetarian spot in SoMa. Luckily for local vegans, though, three new vegan restaurants have debuted in the last two months: the somewhat upscale Shizen, Seed & Salt in the Marina, and the new pan-Asian spot Indochine, from the Sunflower team, next door to the former Sunflower.