The official editorial City Pages position on Bar Luchador closing? Fuck.
It's true: The CP team loved Bar Luchador, as did the other regulars who hoovered margs and queso at the wrestling-themed Mexican restaurant at Stadium Village in Minneapolis.
"Well dudes, there is no easy way to say this, but Bar Luchador will not be reopening, we're closing the doors for good," owner/chef Angelo Pennacchio wrote in a lengthy, heartfelt farewell on Monday. "We could keep scratching and clawing our way through these strange weeks and months and try to keep fighting... but I really don't know what the restaurant world is going to look like when this is all said and done, and I just don't know if we would have been able to make it."
Pennacchio injected a fun-loving, try-anything, punk-rock vibe into every facet of Bar Luchador, the dining scene's latest victim of COVID-19. There were the Guy Fieri tribute nights; the wrestling persona taco contests; the creatively delicious takes on street food; and the best dang margarita in town. Karaoke, trivia, bingo, comedy, sports, and countless pop-up nights (burgers, pho, whatever): If it was fun, Bar Luchador was all over it.
And now, after a five-year run, it's gone.
As mom 'n' pops like Bar Luchador drop like flies during the coronavirus shutdown, what'll emerge on the other side? Probably lifeless international chains like Chipotle and Applebee's, both of which already have footprints in Stadium Village. The market's invisible hand doesn't reward personality or community, two of Bar Luch's strengths; instead, it favors brandable, ultimately interchangeable mediocrity with the ability to scale up. In six months, that might be all we're left with.
But Pennacchio isn't interested in doomsday crystal-ball gazing. He's going out on a positive note.
"I'm losing something that I dedicated my life to, something I tried very hard to try and build up from nothing, and that sucks," he writes "But I'm leaving with friendships and family and memories that are going to be there forever."