Hello everyone, we’re thrilled to announce a significant update for our flagship free Bento theme. The new version 2.0 is a step up from the original template, with tons of additional features as well as under-the-hood upgrades that will make your website faster, more resilient, future-proof, and secure.

Here are just some of the noteworthy changes we’ve made to the theme in the new version, for a full list please see the changelog in the official Bento manual.

  • New grid features, following multiple user requests: we’ve added filtering and sorting to grid templates in Bento, so that now you can display only a single category/tag as well as change the order of the items with a click of a button.
  • Site-wide settings for sidebar layouts now allow establishing your own default sidebar layout (e.g. left-side or full-width) for the entire website, to be overriden, if needed, by individual page and post settings.
  • Massive performance improvements including getting rid of the Isotope third-party dependency (we’ve rewritten the grid from the ground up, using nothing but modern CSS!) as well as moving FontAwesome to a fast CDN. We’ve also rewritten the JS component of the theme’s Customizer options to comply with the best practices for Customizer API development.

Did we mention that the Bento Expansion Pack has also gotten an upgrade? EP ver 2.0 now includes a customizable “coming soon” option (together with a new pre-built layout), a top bar element for displaying additional information above the main menu, and a full-height image header option. Under the hood, the plugin has received multiple fixes as well as code polishes.

What is more, starting with version 2.0 the Expansion Pack now comes with fully automated update checking system, which means you will get notified when a newer version of the plugin is available.

We will continue working on Bento and the Expansion Pack, your feedback and comments are welcome as usual – hit us in the discussion section below or send us a message!

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