Toscanini’s at Central Square closed until July for renovations

New location on First Street opened last Thursday

Local ice cream store Toscanini’s has temporarily closed their 899 Main Street location in Central Square for renovations since Jan. 23. Until they reopen, customers can visit their new location on 159 First Street: its opening was announced via Twitter Jan 25.

The Main Street location is being renovated “to meet handicapped access standards,” owner Gus Rancatore wrote in an email to The Tech. The store will be closed through July, according to Cambridge Day coverage from Jan. 25.

As for the new First Street location, it occupies a “massive” 3,500 square feet, making it much larger than the old one, the Cambridge Day reported. Other upgrades include digital monitors, instead of the previously used chalkboard menus.

Production will also move to the First Street location, even after the Main Street location reopens. “We will be making almost all our ice cream there,” Rancatore wrote to The Tech.

Much ambiguity and uncertainty has surrounded the timeline. Rancatore did not answer multiple requests from The Tech for confirmation on closing and opening dates, and his sister told The Tech in a phone call Jan. 24 that they hoped to open later that day.

“After many misadventures we are open,” Rancatore told Cambridge Day.

Toscanini’s has been at 899 Main Street since 1981. Over the years, their neighbors have included “Science For The People, gay activists, grad students, card counters, a person who wrote term papers for pay, members of the band Lizards in a Circle, and two Sloan grads who were hired by the early video game company, Atari,” Rancatore wrote to The Tech.

The building around the Main Street Toscanini’s is also undergoing renovations, Boston Magazine reported in October: the landlord is turning it into a boutique hotel. Patty Chen’s Dumpling Room “plans to return,” while Cinderella’s Restaurant has “closed for good.”

The First Street location is further from MIT’s main campus than its Main Street counterpart. Starting from Lobby 7, it would take approximately 25 minutes (compared to 9 minutes) to walk there, Google Maps estimates.