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La Serenata de Garibaldi – a Boyle Heights restaurant institution – closes its doors after 32 years

BOYLE HEIGHTSLa Serenata de Garibaldi — which once held an honored place among L.A.’s Mexican restaurants – has closed its original First Street location after 32 years.

Owner Jose “Pepe” Rodriguez won national acclaim for his seafood dishes and sauces that went beyond typical Mexican-American fare.  “In the 1980s, La Serenata was one of the very few Los Angeles restaurants demonstrating the world of Mexican cooking beyond the carnitas plate and the No. 2 dinner,” restaurant critic Jonathan Gold said in a 2010 interview. Rodriguez died in 2010, only a few months after the L.A. Times  declared La Serenata an L.A. dining institution.

Today,  Rodriguez’ son, Marco, told The Eastsider that the First Street location had closed permanently so the family could focus all of its attention and resources on its remaining restaurant on Pico Boulevard in West Los Angeles. That restaurant now employs the Boyle Heights chefs and staff, he said.

Eater LA said that La Serenata’s former First Street space, located across from Mariachi Plaza, had been purchased by a “consortium of restaurant tycoons looking to jump into the address.”

The 3,330-square-foot restaurant space is currently for lease at more than $9,200 a month.

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