Fans of Carlsbadistan’s best little restaurant, Le Passage, already know that owner Michelle Rocca has sold the business and is leaving Carlsbad. In an email to her best customers she hinted at exactly what she is up to:
I’ve been traveling to Australia for over a year now each time falling more and more for the country and the people, one in particular, and have decided to move to the Barossa Valley in March 2008. I know this move will be very hard not only on me but my family and friends, I also know that if I don’t go, I’ll never know. . .So, it is with a heavy heart that I wish to say good-bye and thank you for all the great times that we have shared over the years.
As a way to say good-bye while at the same time introducing Le Passage patrons to the restaurant’s new owners, Laura and Drew Reyer, Rocca and Sous Chef Frank Decker hosted two nights of what she called, The Last Supper. The invite-only dinners (held last night and tonight) included some of Le Passage’s finest creations including seared scallop salad, mac -n- cheese, Kobe sliders and chocolate decadent cake.
The first question fans of Le Passage ask when hearing that Rocca is leaving is will the restaurant change. Rocca said that she has confidence in the Reyers. “I interviewed several potential buyers and actually turned some down because it was like, no way. That’s why I’m happy about Laura and Drew,” she said. “Of course, a part of you always wants to be missed a little, but I think they’re going to be great.”
Like Michelle when she bought Le Passage four years ago, Drew and Laura, are new to the restaurant business, but they are not new to Carlsbad. “Drew and I met here and then got married and moved to LA,” Laura said. “Recently we started looking for a way to get back to Carlsbad. I researched all kinds of businesses and this one seemed right.”
While we are going to miss Rocca’s teasing sense of humor and charmingly generous ways we can say that after spending a short time with Laura and Drew were confident that Le Passage is in good hands. We’re actually looking forward to what Laura has planned for Carlsbad’s finest French Bistro. If we were to bet, we’d say that Carlsbadistan will be very happy.