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Dining News: RIP JR's Texas BBQ?

Just after celebrating its 25th anniversary, JR's Texas BBQ will likely close its doors this week due to the slow economy, reports KCRA's Mike Luery.

Owner J.R. Rothenberger gave KCRA 3 an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at his restaurant on Otto Circle in South Sacramento.

Rothenberger told KCRA 3 that business is slow and sales have declined from $1.1 million a year to $600,000.

He said he's had to lay off 13 of his 22 employees.

The biggest factor, Rothenberger said, was the announcement by Campbell's Soup last September that it would be closing its South Sacramento plant and laying off hundreds of employees.

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Countdown to BaconFest: The pork descends upon Sactown - BaconFest came out of nowhere last year at this time and blew people away. It was fun. It was popular. It created a buzz. And best of all, it brought plenty of traffic into the area's restaurants...The second annual BaconFest is coming and there's even more excitement building. This celebration of all things bacon -- including some pretty incredible doughnuts at Doughbot -- begins Jan. 20 with an opening night party at Hook & Ladder, and concludes with the second annual Chefs Challenge at Mulvaney's on Jan. 27. Brad Cecchi of Grange returns as the defending champion. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

2013 - Changes or Not for Food Trucks? - I didn't become an American until about 20 years ago. I'm Canadian born and used that as an excuse for many years to ignore politics. This is explains why I tend to be a bit naive on the political process. Back in August things had looked rather rosy for the food trucks. We were going to go to the Sacramento City Council and hopefully have a few changed ordinances for the fall. These hopes were all reflected in a post back in August. You've probably noticed I've been pretty silent since then on food truck stuff. Oh, I had a post at the end of September about the proposed food truck pod, and then nothing. I was silent for several reasons but figure that as we move into 2013, it's time to do a little catch up. Thing is, this food truck stuff is ever changing. Catherine Enfield on Munchie Musings.

Spoto Wines to star at Firehouse winemaker dinner - One of the things that distinguishes The Firehouse as an excellent restaurant is its enduring commitment to wine dinners. They're major events in their own right, featuring multi-course prix fixe menus with wine pairings from some of the best producers going. The next such dinner, on Jan. 25, will showcase Spoto Wines, a rarity in the California wine trade. These highly regarded wines are made with grapes from the Oakville appellation at Spoto's tiny winery in a residential neighborhood in Sacramento. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Sacramento is a burger kind of town, so what's your favorite? - Our town is blessed with hamburgers. Big burgers, little burgers (sliders), Wagyu beef burgers, hand-formed burgers, fully loaded burgers, half-pound burgers, steakhouse burgers (think Morton's, Land Ocean and Chops) and even a burger made from ground Niman Ranch shortrib meat. That one is at Maranello in Fair Oaks, and is topped with manchego cheese, Little Gem lettuce, tomato confit, onion straws and a "dijonnaise" of house-made mayonnaise and Dijon mustard, with a side of skinny twice-cooked fries (916-241-9365, Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Broadway Bound: Jamie’s is steeped in traditional American cooking - In the days before corporate restaurant ownership, this type of restaurant dominated the land. Every small town had a diner that made almost everything in-house. Why? Because they had to. These days, however, companies like Sysco have planed out the independent restaurant market with their on-time national delivery of everything from frozen French fries to battered cod fillets, cherry pie to clam chowder. Whether eating at a lodge kitchen in Duluth or a roadside diner in Des Moines, odds are you’re probably eating the exact same fare made in the exact same factory somewhere in Omaha. Where then can you find traditional American cooking (meaning, loosely, standard restaurant dishes of the past 50 years) in the modern American city? Well, in this city you can find it at Jamie’s Broadway Grille. Greg Sabin in Inside Publications.


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