Recreating a Healdsburg Tradition
Healdsburg’s next iconic restaurant will be a new concept in a familiar spot—a spot where many locals have fond memories of coming together over good food and bocce.
The newcomer, Molti Amici, will serve casual Italian fare much like the cuisine guests devoured at the last restaurant to occupy the space at 330 Healdsburg Avenue.
The new eatery, slated to open this summer, is helmed by Jonny Barr, hospitality industry veteran and former general manager of SingleThread. To run the kitchen, Barr tapped fellow SingleThread alums Sean McGaughey and Melissa Yanc, who together own and operate Quail & Condor Bakery and Troubadour Bread & Bistro across the street.
Barr said he always saw the former restaurant as a community gathering place. He hopes to recreate that vibe. “We have large shoes to fill,” said Barr, who has lived in Healdsburg since 2014. “We want the new space to be welcoming, approachable, and casual—the kind of restaurant where anybody and everybody can come and enjoy a meal.”
The name of the new restaurant practically manifests these goals; “molti amici” in Italian means “many friends.” Resurrecting a bocce league certainly will facilitate the sense of community.
As for the menus, Barr has several designs. He said Molti Amici wants to “cook without titles or boundaries.” Yes, there’ll be pizzas. Yes, there’ll be pastas. There also will be main courses that range from vegetarian-friendly to whole roasted chicken, bone-in steak for two, and a whole fish. The kids’ menu will have a basic cheese pizza, and pasta with butter and parmesan.
Barr said the cocktail program will spotlight the classics: negronis, martinis, drinks like these. He noted that the wine program will be eclectic and approachable: A healthy selection of wines from France and Italy mixed with hard-to-find options from California. “We see the wine program as something that will change over time,” said Barr, a native of upstate New York. He added that affordability is key.
Barr was gracious when asked about his experience at SingleThread, noting that the experience of working for Sonoma County’s only restaurant to receive three Michelin stars cultivated a unique sense of hospitality that will characterize the experience at Molti Amici for years to come.
“SingleThread brought us here,” he said. “Community is what keeps us here.”