In a depressing year of restaurant closures, another Austin eatery is saying auf Wiedersehen for good.
Fabi + Rosi, the charming European-inspired restaurant helmed by German-born chef Wolfgang Murbe and his wife, native Austinite Cassie Williamson, issued a statement on Thursday, December 10, that the restaurant would close permanently after 12 years.
“The time has come for us to say goodbye,” the email reads. “To those of you who have worked beside us, dined with us and celebrated with us, thank you. From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you. Because of you, not only did this little dream of ours come true, it expanded into much, much more than the two of us could have ever imagined 12 years ago. It has truly been an honor for Wolfgang and I to be part of your lives through very special weddings, proposals, first dates, and neighbors near and far that have made us ‘your place.’ We hope our paths cross another time in another place.”
Tucked away in a century-old house in Tarrytown, Fabi + Rosi, was a critical darling, garnering many accolades in its time (including numerous nominations for the CultureMap Tastemaker Awards). Despite its relatively low profile, it has been a favorite of the local food scene since opening in 2009, in part for Murbe’s modern twist on classic European cuisine, in part for its irresistibly enchanting ambiance, and, truth be told, in part because Austinites couldn’t get enough of the couple’s endearing love story. The pair met when Murbe was working as a chef on a friend’s yacht in Spain and had hopes of one day opening his own eatery. The two fell in love, settled back in Williamson’s hometown, and the rest is Austin food history.
Though it’s unclear whether the Fabi + Rosi closing is solely brought on by the pandemic, the implications are that 2020 has not been kind to the restaurant. It closed early in the pandemic but reopened for curbside-pickup service in late May, and even opened its much-anticipated biergarten in July. Sadly, it doesn’t seem to have been enough to keep the sweetheart spot afloat — and locals loyal to Fabi + Rosi are taking to social media to express their heartbreak over the closure, with many recounting the special occasions celebrated there throughout the years.
While it is the end of an era for the Tarrytown staple, Austinites can still support the restaurant in its final days, as Fabi + Rosi will continue to take online orders and offer curbside pickup through next week.