The La Merenda Market, 809 S. Barclay St., closed its doors on Saturday, Sept. 7.
The little retail storefront, which offered La Merenda guests the opportunity to purchase locally procured meats and produce, wine and prepared food items opened in January.
But, after seven months of operation, the restaurant has made the decision to close the retail shop. The hope is that the building will continue to see use as a prep kitchen, but also be used for small events, including cooking classes and tastings.
The news was shared in an email to La Merenda guests on Friday.
"Thank all of your for coming and checking out the La Merenda Marketplace this Spring and Summer. It was great getting to see you and speak with you all in the shop. As you know we started the Marketplace as a way to offer you the high-quality local meat and produce you receive in our restaurants. When we opened, we weren’t sure what to expect, but we definitely learned a lot over the last 5 months in the shop.
"As a business one of our major goals has always been supporting sustainable farming, and restaurant practices. As a restaurant we are very adept at meeting this goal by reducing waste product, however, we have found that meeting this goal while running a full-time shop is a tough challenge. Because of this, we have decided that we should refocus our energy into our restaurants and away from full-time operation of the Marketplace.
"Although, it will no longer serve as a storefront, this is not the end of the Marketplace kitchen. In addition to the work of prepping for our restaurants and private events, we also hope to start using the Marketplace as a location to host smaller events, like cooking classes and wine tastings. Look out for information on these events in our future emails.
"Thank you all again for coming out to the La Merenda Marketplace your support means the world to us."
-The La Merenda Marketplace Team
Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club.
When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.