Confronted with a worrisome business climate, a family-owned Italian restaurant and pizzeria with roots dating back 50 years in Wilmington, Massachusetts, abruptly closed its doors in late June.

Cucina LaRosa’s, founded eight years ago by Jason Evans, bid a sad farewell to its customers in a Facebook and Instagram post on June 27. Evans was carrying on a tradition started by his parents, Larry and Rosalie Evans, who opened the original Cucina LaRosa’s in Wilmington’s Winchester Center in the early 1970s. Out of its scratch kitchen Cucina LaRosa’s plated 10 specialty pizzas as well as calzones, pastas, sandwiches, salads and soups.

“The time has come to say goodbye,” the June 27 post read. “The decision to close our doors has not been easy. Rising costs, both in payroll and food supplies, combined with the challenges of managing a demanding business in our later years, have made it increasingly difficult to continue.”

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Curiously, Cucina LaRosa’s gave no hint of any plans to shut down in social media posts just days earlier. If anything, the messaging was upbeat and positive.

On June 20, the restaurant announced that it had promoted a former waitress to the position of function manager and touted its “spacious new function room and a growing catering business.” That same day the Evans family announced their Summer Grill Menu with items like steak tips, chicken, meat combos, baked beans, cole slaw and loaded baked potato salad.

A June 21 post noted that the restaurant wouldn’t offer roast beef that day “as we are introducing our summer menu and have a lot of catering. ‘Tis the season!”

Even June 26 looked to be a promising day as Cucina LaRosa’s invited customers to come in and roll a pair of dice for a chance to win free pizza; rolling snake eyes in three tries would earn guests a free Sicilian or traditional slice.

But, the very next day, a new post announced Cucina Larosa’s was “permanently closed.”

“We will deeply miss the vibrant relationships we’ve forged over the last ten years,” the post read. “From supporting local organizations to celebrating milestones with you, our beloved customers, these memories will always hold a special place in our hearts. We are immensely thankful for our dedicated and talented staff, who have been the backbone of Cucina LaRosa’s. If you or someone you know is seeking skilled hospitality professionals, please reach out to us.”

The family added that they were looking forward to “staying engaged with the community and visiting fellow local businesses more often.”