Bertucci's files for bankruptcy and closes more CT restaurants

Photo of Leeanne Griffin

Bertucci's, an Italian restaurant chain based in Northborough, Mass., has closed more Connecticut locations, with just one remaining in the state.

Restaurants in Avon, at 380 West Main St., and Newington, at 2929 Berlin Turnpike, are now closed. Calls to each location were answered with a recorded message, identified as the "Bertucci's closed restaurants hotline," with prompts for vendors, employees, guests and media. 

The restaurants reportedly closed this week, but the exact dates are unclear. Representatives for Bertucci's did not immediately reply to request for comment.

Trade magazine Restaurant Business reported Monday that Bertucci's had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy this week for a second time, after a filing in 2018. At that time, Bertucci's closed 15 of its restaurants, including three in Connecticut. 

The Glastonbury location, at 2882 Main St., is the sole Connecticut restaurant left on Bertucci's website. A Darien location closed abruptly in September. All four were operating in January 2022, when celebrity chef Christian Petroni, formerly of Fortina, partnered with Bertucci's to introduce special menu items.

Bertucci's also served as a site for Guy Fieri's Flavortown, a ghost kitchen concept offering delivery-only menus.

The Bertucci's closings come one week after Ninety Nine Restaurants, another Massachusetts-based chain, abruptly shuttered three Connecticut locations in one day. Connecticut State Sen. Matthew Lesser said he wants officials with the state Department of Labor to investigate whether the chain violated any state or federal laws by closing without any advanced notice. 

Juliet Manalan, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Labor, told Hearst Connecticut that businesses are required to notify U.S. Department of Labor through the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act if they meet certain thresholds. Generally speaking, the threshold at which companies are required to give 60 days' advanced notice of a mass layoff is 100 or more full-time workers losing their jobs.

"If they don’t meet that threshold, federal law does not require them to file the pending closure or layoff," Manalan said. She said Friday it was not immediately clear whether the layoffs resulting from the closing of the Ninety Nine Restaurant locations met the federal threshold.

Any enforcement action that might be taken against the company would be determined by the federal Labor Department, she said.

National diner chain Denny's has also closed multiple locations in Connecticut this fall. Restaurants in Enfield, West Haven, Wethersfield and Vernon suddenly closed between Sept. 5 and Oct. 17, leaving four remaining Denny's in the state. 

With prior reporting by Luther Turmelle.