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Officine BRERA is inspired by the Brera Design District in Milano, Italy. It takes its roots in a workshop based approach to hands on making as a form of thinking. The original structure, a 1920’s masonry and steel warehouse along 6th street that housed the Los Angeles Gas Company in Downtown Los Angeles, sets the frame work for an industrial flavored contemporary styled working kitchen, bar, and dining space.
The project is centered around a large central kitchen with a glassed-in exhibition cooking space with a focus on three wood burning grills. The dining room takes full advantage of the thirty-five foot high original open truss ceiling and linear spine of glass which focuses the room and floods it with natural light – further bookended by the kitchen on one end and a wall of original steel windows on the other.
East and west of the dining room are two exterior patio dining areas, one covered by a corten steel canopy that continues along the east façade and folds down to the ground forming the new restaurant entry. A private dining space that seats up to 25 people opens to the main dining room by sliding custom bi-folding doors and also allows for separation for private events.
Overall the interior and exterior adaptive reuse project takes full advantage of the existing masonry structure by celebrating its unique industrial character. Through the use of corten steel, exposed steel structure, concrete, reclaimed wood and other industrial inspired materials, the design language integrates the historic with new fluid forms into a historically inspired contemporary workshop to observe the craft of Italian cuisine within an authentic space.