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Amid restaurant shutdown, Lucques lays off staff and closes for good after 21 years

Lucques co-owners Caroline Styne, left, and Suzanne Goin
Lucques co-owners Caroline Styne, left, and Suzanne Goin.
(Dylan + Jeni)

There will be no fond farewell for one of L.A.’s most venerable restaurants.

Amid a statewide restaurant shutdown with no clear end in sight, chef Suzanne Goin and restaurateur Caroline Styne have decided to permanently close Lucques, their 21-year-old Californian-Mediterranean restaurant, a month and a half early.

Goin said in an Instagram post Sunday that the duo had laid off their staff, spent the last few days packing up the Melrose Avenue space and were now closed for good.

“Definitely not how @carolinestyne and i had envisioned it,” she wrote. “When we announced a week ago wednesday we had a job planned for every lucques employee—72 hours later we were in the unimaginable position of laying off our staffs at all the restaurants—people we love like family, people who can not sustain this shutdown...our hearts are broken.”

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The West Hollywood restaurant had announced earlier this month that it would close on May 6. It had planned to continue to be open for lunch, dinner and its famed Sunday Suppers during its final weeks, and had a number of events on the books including a dinner with chef Nancy Silverton.

But then the COVID-19 pandemic worsened, leading to a shutdown of dine-in service at Los Angeles restaurants that was announced on March 15, followed shortly by a countywide order. That hastened the end for Lucques, which opened in 1998 in a former carriage house and went on to become one of the region’s most beloved restaurants and a fixture on The Times’ 101 Best Restaurants list. Goin and Styne also co-own A.O.C., Tavern and Larder Baking Co.

Goin ended her post by thanking employees for working “with us to the bitter end despite being laid off.”

“We love you and we will do everything to be there for you now and on the other side of this hell. But we need help,” she said, tagging the handles for several government officials, including Gov. Gavin Newsom and Mayor Eric Garcetti.


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