- The food truck is keeping the name Sammataro and will stay parked in the Central East Austin neighborhood at 1108 East 12th Street for now. In mid-September, it will move into the Camp East space in Rosewood at 2902 East 12th Street.
- The physical restaurant in the West End neighborhood of downtown Austin will change its name to La Volta and continue to operate from the same address of 900 West 10th Street. The name change is official starting on Saturday, August 26.
“We are splitting away from the Sammataro business,” Isak Kurbasic, who is part of the team that is holding onto the physical restaurant, confirms to Eater. “I can’t really divulge too much about what happened there, but we just had to cut ties with our previous business partner.” He is referring to Sammataro co-founder Isaac Flores, who is keeping the food truck.
“Restaurants and partnerships are really hard,” Flores tells Eater. “We just had a disagreement and we decided to go our separate ways.” He notes that there were nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) that were signed late last week. Originally, he had announced on Instagram that the truck was temporarily closed over a weekend in early August, and followed up by talking to the Statesman about the business breakup on August 9.
This isn’t the first Sammataro split-up in the business’s history. The pizza spot opened as a pop-up in Austin in 2020 and morphed into a food truck in Westlake that same year. The name stemmed from then-co-partner Kelsey Sammataro Hutchins. Then, in 2021, the original team parted ways. Hutchins left the business. Flores kept the food truck and moved it into the Arbor Food Court (which is when Kurbasic became an investor in the business, along with investment company Wisteria Venture Partners). In January 2023, Flores, Kurbasic, and Wisteria Venture Partners opened Sammataro’s first physical restaurant on West 10th Street. Sammataro’s other co-founders, Daniel Sorg and Townsend Smith, went on to open their own pizzeria, Allday Pizza, in Tarrytown in March 2023. (There’s a second Allday location slated for East Austin later this year.)
When Sammataro the restaurant becomes La Volta, the kitchen will remain committed to serving up wood-fired New York-style pizza. Kurbasic notes that the name change gives the team the opportunity to finesse the overall menu and beverage offerings. Chef Cole Curcio, who was restaurant’s head chef before, will continue to oversee the food.
The team decided on the name “La Volta” because it is the Italian term for “the turn,” which was apt for a business morphing into something new — as Kurbasic explains, it is “our turn of the business and our turn to really build out this dream.” The name also refers to a popular couple’s dance from the Italian Renaissance. “It represents something festive, which really embodies the experience at West 10th,” he says, that it’s “a lot of the energy that you feel when you sit down to eat.”
The restaurant is currently open as Sammataro, through its official debut as La Volta is on Saturday, August 26. They’ve already added new lunch hours, and there are plans on revamp and expand the outdoor back area for more dining capacity and events. The team also wants to eventually open a second location, but will focus on it after La Volta is open for a month or two.
New La Volta co-partners, along with Kurbasic and Wisteria Venture Partners, are Travis Tober (Nickel City, Uncle Nicky’s, Old Pal, forthcoming Murray’s Tavern; he’ll work as La Volta’s advisor developing the bar program and partnerships), musician Cam Avery of psychedelic group Tame Impala, and Tom Howie of electronic duo Bob Moses.
La Volta’s debut party takes place in the back area of the restaurant (the dining room will be open for regular service). The party runs from 7 to 11 p.m. and Avery will perform. The event will also raise money for the Hawaiʻi Foodbank as part of the organization’s efforts to support people impacted by the Maui wildfires.
As for Sammataro the food truck, Flores says, “I’m going back to my roots with my name and doing what I love.” It’ll keep serving food at its Arbor Food Park location for now; when the truck moves into Camp East (which is run by wine bar and shop Cork & Screw) next month, it’ll expand the food menu. Flores also plans on opening a speakeasy-style, reservations-only, dine-in space within one of the physical buildings there (perhaps taking over the former Dō’s Tiny Bread Shed?).
In the future, Flores is looking to open an additional more built-out physical restaurant. “We’re going to partner up with someone really big in Austin,” he shares, teasing it’s a person in the restaurant world, where the pizzeria will provide the food. He says that it’ll be found somewhere in South Austin, but there is no projected timeline yet.