Business & Real Estate

Local brothers opening pub in former Maltby's space

Courtesy of Lars and Andrew Smith
Lars and Andrew Smith, above, plan to open a tap room and pizzeria in Los Altos. They also run Palo Alto Tap Room, at left.

A new public house and pizzeria is slated to move into the old Maltby’s Restaurant space at 101 Plaza North this summer.

The idea for the eatery was brewing with Andrew and Lars Smith, brothers who grew up in Palo Alto, for years before they decided on the Los Altos location. They selected the name State of Mind Public House – as in “California State of Mind” – for their new venture.

The Smith brothers currently own Palo Alto Tap Room, a bar on the city’s bustling University Avenue that features Palo Alto Brewing Co. beers and award-winning chili. According to Lars, their Los Altos spot will feature Palo Alto Brewing beers as well as a dozen other taps from throughout the state and California wines.

State of Mind’s star will be its pizza. Lars is a veteran of popular California chain Pizza My Heart, and State of Mind’s nascent Instagram account displays photographs of pizzas topped with figs, goat cheese and more. According to Andrew, the Los Altos restaurant also will serve bar food focusing on California ingredients.

Details on the decor are still being hammered out, but the brothers hope to have a friendly atmosphere similar to Menlo Park’s Oasis while maintaining Palo Alto Tap Room’s more modern aesthetic. They say they are aware that Los Altos’ clientele is different from Palo Alto’s, and they are hoping to cater to a wide audience, including longtime Los Altos residents, young families and downtown employees.

Lars and Andrew are joined in the ownership team by their father, Jim, and Lars’ wife, Cristina. Amy Betz, a manager at Palo Alto Tap Room, is also a partner in State of Mind. The group plans to take the spring to plan and overhaul the site, which at 3,680 square feet is approximately two-thirds larger than Palo Alto Tap Room. Lars is scheduled to take time away from the project in March to compete in the International Pizza Challenge, part of Las Vegas’ International Pizza Exposition.


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