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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mina Group Denies It's Planning to Close Union Square Flagship

Posted By on Thu, Apr 15, 2010 at 12:12 PM

Michael Mina. - SUPERCHEFBLOG.COM
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Rumors bubbled to the surface on Eater this week, suggesting that restaurant mogul Michael Mina had plans to close down his flagship fine-dining eatery in the Westin St. Francis ― a Beard semifinalist this year ― only to drop anchor in the Aqua space at 252 California. Eater dubbed it "Minagate," with the suggestion (stoked by anonymous tipsters) that the chef was engaged in a complex game of union-busting (Michael Mina, the restaurant, is a union shop), or at a minimum not acting in good faith with workers.

Today the Mina Group issued a statement about the rumors. In brief: Nothing to see here, guys. The fine-dining powerhouse is indeed moving into Aqua on May 1, though there's no word yet on concept or timeline for opening. There are also no plans to close Michael Mina, though check out the statement's careful wording: "the plan is to continue to operate restaurants at both locations." We all know what happens to the best laid plans, right? Full statement after the jump.

STATEMENT

Regarding plans for both Restaurant MICHAEL MINA and 252 California Street

- The Mina Group will take over the lease at 252 California Street on May 1. No decisions have yet been made regarding a finalized concept, name, or timing of opening.

- Although the Mina Group will take over the new location, the plan is to continue to operate restaurants at both locations; its flagship venue at the Westin St Francis and the 252 California Street.

"We have every intention of operating restaurants at both addresses," stated Chef Michael Mina. "Having both locations gives us the opportunity to consider a range of creative options to better accommodate our guests and dining trends in San Francisco."

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