For Sale: One (1) Liberty Cafe, Beloved by Bernalwood

Liberty Cafe

Woa.  The sleuths at InsideScooped have uncovered some unsettling news: The Liberty Cafe on Cortland is for sale:

Bernal Heights mainstay and all-American charmer Liberty Cafe is for sale and looking for a buyer.

Liberty Cafe first opened in 1994, with Zuni vet Cathie Guntli at the helm. It soon earned three stars and Top 100 status for years to come. Michael Bauer even remarked, in 2001, that diners should “consider it like driving to Grandma’s for dinner; it’s worth the trip even if you have to pay.” Guntli passed away in 2009, at which point Stuart Bai of Sally’s and Tony Hua of Hard Knox Cafe bought the place.

But now, it’s back on the market. Some stats from the listing: 2000 square feet, 66 Total Seats (34 in cafe, 12 in bakery and 20 on the patio), comes with a Type 41 liquor license (beer/wine only), “excellent feng shui” and a current rent of $3K/month. The pricetag appears to be $275K.

PHOTO: Telstar Logistics

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7 Responses to For Sale: One (1) Liberty Cafe, Beloved by Bernalwood

  1. SeanD says:

    We’ve been mourning the loss of Liberty since the previous owner died – it’s just not up to those older standards now. However we have found much love and tastiness at Vega across the street. What was once a rather mediocre restaurant (I forget the name of the old place) has become damn tasty since The Vino Rosso folks took over – truly a cut above most Italian places in SF (IMHO).

  2. Art says:

    The old place was the Hungarian Sausage Factory.
    I will miss the Liberty if it goes away, but maybe it’s time for a change there.

  3. I agree SeanD! It’s still pretty good, but it lost some magical je ne sais quoi.

  4. Tenny says:

    After the owner of Hungarian Sausage Factory passed away (as I recall his name was Imre, a real BH pioneer), the place was reopened as Valentina. When it passed hands to the folks who run Vino Rossa, they renamed it Vega.

    • SeanD says:

      Thanks Tenny – the mediocre place was Valentina – I never made it to the Hungarian Sausage Factory – was it good?

      • Tenny says:

        The sausage was very good, but it was a one-man show. Once you ordered you could get your food in 5 minutes — or an hour. When Cathie opened up the Liberty it was a big step up for Cortland St.

  5. Pingback: Foodie Entrepreneur Wanted for Glamorous New Space on Cortland | Bernalwood

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