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Preston Center Italian restaurant suffers the Mi Piaci curse

Preston Center Italian restaurant suffers the Mi Piaci curse

Cucina Neighborhood Italian
Italian restaurant bites dust. Photo courtesy of Cucina

A Preston Center restaurant's brief but tortured existence has come to an end: Cucina Neighborhood Italian has closed, never again to serve another Italian-esque flatbread or 50-percent-off bottle of white wine.

A spokesperson at the center confirmed that the restaurant had closed, but declined to comment. Its website has been suspended, its phone disconnected and its last Facebook post was on February 1, when it touted its brunch and Super Bowl-watching capability. In its final days, the restaurant had taken to canceling reservations on slow nights, claiming it was closing early.

Given the recent closure of Spoon, one might be tempted to draw conclusions about the viability of Preston Center, except for the fractured management of Cucina, which was a ship without a captain.

It opened in spring 2014, in the spot that was previously home to a short-lived revival of Mi Piaci. Mi Piaci moved there in July 2013 in an odd set of circumstances after being booted from its longtime location on Montfort Drive.

Before Mi Piaci, the space was Ocho, the Mex-American restaurant that the Blacks opened with Benjamin Crosland, whose family owns the property. Black subsequently claimed that Mi Piaci was "stolen" by his former business partner.

In November, Cucina's menu was expanded to include a variety of non-Italian options including the ever-popular nachos, cheeseburgers and baby back ribs.