Tag Archives: Anastasia Schipani

Giovanni’s last stand: Family rallies to save restaurant

Giovanni's, the oldest restaurant on Shattuck Avenue, may have to close at the end of the month because of taxes owed to the IRS. The poster announcing a new movie inadvertently telegraphs the restaurant's situation. Photo: Ten Friedman
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By Ted Friedman

Giovanni Schipani, 81, has been fighting the past two years to save the restaurant he launched in 1961. Now, according to Anna Schipani, 63, the bookkeeper at Giovanni, “we could be boarded-up at the end of the month if we don’t pay back taxes to IRS.”

Giovanni, at 2420 Shattuck Ave., is “probably” the oldest restaurant on Shattuck, according to Steve Finacom, vice president of the Berkeley Architectural Heritage Association.

In the 1960s and 1970s, Schipani, known as Johnny to friends, had been wildly successful in Berkeley’s flourishing south side restaurant scene, earning enough money from his first restaurant, Mr. Pizza, to buy a muffler shop and convert it to an upscale Italian family restaurant seating 200. … Continue reading »

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