NEW RESTAURATEUR Jon Barr is the new owner of the restaurant space on Healdsburg Avenue where Campo Fina used to be; his Molti Amici will open in summer. (Photo courtesy of Suited Hospitality)

The coveted downtown restaurant location at 330 Healdsburg Ave., vacated in October by Campo Fina, will reopen this summer as Molti Amici, loosely translated from Italian as “many friends.”

“Campo was a space that I would dine at three to four times a week,” said new owner Jonny Barr, who moved to Healdsburg from New York. “It was one of the first restaurants that really made me feel at home and at ease. The first time I walked through the doors, it felt like a New York restaurant. Narrow, tight, exposed brick, lots of energy.”

Barr, 38, came to Healdsburg to work as general manager at SingleThread, the Michelin three-starred restaurant on Center Street. That put him at center stage in Healdsburg’s rapidly developing haute cuisine trade, where he met multiple restaurateurs and their customers, who form the culinary heart of today’s downtown. 

That’s what gave him the idea for the name, Molti Amici.

“Going into Campo Fina meant walking past multiple tables that you would have to say hello to, if it was winemakers or it was a tasting room attendant or an art gallery owner in town that you had some connection with,” he said over a glass of wine at the Troubadour Bakery and Bistro across the street. “It always felt like a modern day Cheers, where everyone knew your name.”

Among his creative partners in Molti Amici are Sean McGaughey and Melissa Yanc, who will serve as co-executive chefs of the new restaurant. Alumni of the SingleThread universe as well, they currently run Troubadour and the Quail and Condor Bakery farther south on Healdsburg Avenue.

He credits “Chef Sean and Chef Melissa” for the direction of the menu, saying the focus will still be Italian. “It’s not going to be the same menu that Campo had, but it’s going to be wood fire pizzas, wood fire entrees, handmade pastas, extruded pastas, vegetable forward dishes, where the meat becomes more of a condiment.” 

Barr said there would be slightly different lunch and dinner menus,  with the diner menu including “more wood-fired proteins and large shared items out of the woodfire oven.”

Campo Fina’s closing was coincident with Barr’s departure from SingleThread in November, and it may have helped him forge a new career. Recalled Barr, “I had no aspirations of getting into restaurants. I was just going to take a break, take some time off, take a year just to collect my thoughts and see what the next steps were for myself. 

“Then I saw the lease sign go up,” he said. 

The space at 330 Healdsburg is now gutted back to its brick walls—furniture and facilities are gone, but the woodfire oven still stands immovable in the back dining area. The bocce court will remain as well, and Barr plans to keep the “wall of champions” intact through the remodel, which he describes as “just a facelift.” 

“I just want to make sure that this isn’t about where myself or Sean have worked, what we’ve done in our careers,” he said. “This isn’t about us chasing awards, accolades, national attention.”

Barr said he plans to open this summer, and bring back the atmosphere of camaraderie and good food that made Campo Fina the yardstick of social dining in Healdsburg.

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