River City Brewing Company

Dining News: Now Open - Pachamama Coffee Shop Replacing Cultured & Cured


Pachamama Coffee Cooperative has opened a cafe in the spot formerly occupied by The Cultured & The Cured at 37th & J, reports Sac News & Review's Janelle Bitker.

Whereas the building didn’t really suit a cheese shop slash restaurant, it does feel perfect for a cafe, with bar seating looking out of large windows all around. With a fresh coat of cyan blue paint, the Pachamama doesn’t adopt the typical minimalist, beige and hipster look of cafes like Temple and Insight.

Still, single-origin pours abound. Affogatos are made with organic Strauss ice cream. Pastries come from Sugar Plum Vegan and Freeport Bakery, and a small refrigerator holds grab-and-go vegan lunch options from the Green Boheme. There’s also beer on tap.

Read the entire story in Sac News & Review.

This is the third location for grower-owned co-op. In addition to their newest location at 3644 J Street, Pachamama also has a coffee bar in Davis at 521 1st Street and a roastery/retail store in midtown at 919 20th Street.

Learn more and become a coffee subscriber at http://www.pacha.coop/.

More News:

Local chef launches pop-up dinner company - Local chef Matthew Flores, who previously worked at Grange Restaurant & Bar, is launching a pop-up dinner company called Vagabond Dining Events with a six-course dinner in midtown on Nov. 2. Dani Anguiano in Sactown Mag.

Corner Bakery Cafe to open in Elk Grove site on Monday - Corner Bakery Cafe, a Dallas-based fast-casual restaurant, will open Monday in Laguna Gateway Shopping Center in Elk Grove. The cafe at 8235 Laguna Blvd. is the second in the area. In March, a Corner Bakery opened at 2281 Del Paso Road in Park Place Shopping Center in Natomas. Mark Glover in the Sac Bee.

Rocklin burger restaurant closes, for now - Last week, Slider Burgers in Rocklin posted a Facebook message announcing its decision to close. "Sorry to say, Slider Burgers is currently closed for business. This could potentially lead to a permanent closure but it is not definite," it says. The restaurant hopes to "reopen again in the foreseeable future," according to the message. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Oak Park redevelopment to bring 'float center' and health bar to Broadway - Set up to feel like a coffeehouse, Vibe Health Bar will have menu and drink items geared around nutrients and local organic ingredients as much as possible. In addition to salads and sandwiches, the feature item will be the “acai bowl,” a concept found at health-based eateries in other cities...Depending on city permits, the two businesses could be open by year’s end, though it’s possible it’ll be early next year, he said. Ben van der Meer in Sac Biz Journal.

Natomas Bites: Joi’s Kitchen Laotian Cuisine - There aren’t that many Laotian restaurants in Sacramento, so I count myself lucky to have found one so close to my office. It might not be for everyone… .come with a sense of adventure, a love of spice, sour and texture and you’ll leave full and happy. At about $37 for all four dishes, it’s not the cheapest place I’ve ever dined, but it fed two of us lunch with leftovers. And it’s not like I’m going to cook any of that for myself. Sound good? Check out Joi’s Kitchen located at 4301 Truxel Road. Open 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, Saturday 12:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sara Floor on Natomas Buzz.

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Dining News: Opening Dates for Localis, Saddle Rock & Broderick Midtown


Chris Jarsoz and Matt Chong, the maestros behind Team Broderick, are about to open 3 new midtown restaurants. Here are their opening dates, per Sactown Mag.

  • Localis, which replaced the never-opened Piccola Citta, Trick Pony and Tuli at 21st & S, is expected to open July 1. It will be helmed by Chef Chris Barnum, most recently at Roseville's Cibo 7.
  • Saddle Rock, replacing Capital Dime/L Wine Lounge, is scheduled to open July 22. It will be led by chef Kevin O'Connor, who has worked at Blackbird and recently held popups in and around Sacramento.
  • Broderick Midtown, replacing Wahoo's Fish Taco, is expected to open Aug. 1. It will mirror the menu of the West Sac location.
  • The Patriot, a solo project by Jarsoz, will open Oct. 1 at the Milagro Center in Carmichael.

Read all the details in Sactown Mag.

While we're on the topic of Team Broderick, Sac News Review's Janelle Bitker had a great & long profile of some of the up and coming teams building small restaurant empires in Sac, including Kimio Bazette and Jon Modrow of Golden Bear, Hook & Ladder and Jason Boggs, Alex Origoni and Garrett Van Vleck of Shady Lady.

More News:

The Kitchen's former chef finds home in Berkeley - John Griffiths quietly left his post as the executive chef at the highly-acclaimed, theatrical restaurant The Kitchen last year, and we haven’t heard much from him since...Today, we learn about that “something else.” The San Francisco Chronicle reveals that Griffiths will be the executive chef The Advocate, a hotly-anticipated restaurant coming to Berkeley from the same owners as obscenely popular Mexican restaurant Comal. Janelle Bitker in Sac News & Review.

Sonic Drive-In reopens in Roseville - If you're thirsty for the signature cherry limeade at Sonic Drive-In, this is your lucky day. The restaurant's Roseville location reopened after shutting its doors last year. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Design of new Broadway home for The Kitchen is shaping up - Owners of the Broadway building that will become home to The Kitchen restaurant have submitted plans to the city and hope to begin work by the end of the year. A former grocery store, it has all the charm of a retail project built the middle of last century. But Scott Maxwell, a partner in the project at 915 Broadway, said the goal is to soften the stark design to create a more inviting one-story building with multiple tenants. The plan also calls for adding trees to the site. Ben van der Meer in Sac Biz Journal.

Something’s fishy (in a good way) at McCormick & Schmick - Hefty chunks of fresh cod are dipped in batter that’s spiked with Blue Moon Ale, deep-fried and served steaming hot and crunchy. Dip them in tartar sauce that gets heat from poblano and chipotle peppers. The house-cut french fries (from Idaho potatoes) are spritzed with malt vinegar and dashed with Old Bay seasoning. Save some time and eat in the bar area, where the window view is of metal statuary of an elk family. Hmm. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Continue reading "Dining News: Opening Dates for Localis, Saddle Rock & Broderick Midtown" »

Dining News: RIP - Chef's Olive Mix on L Street Has Closed


Chef's Olive Mix's new second location at 1019 L Street has closed, but its Old Sacramento location remains open.

In a short interview over the weekend, owner Lisa Psakaly said that the location was forced to close due to regulatory burdens.

Because the L street location was an offshoot of the existing Old Sac location, Psakaly's plan was to drive the olive oil bottles and spouts from the Dowtown to Old Sac locations nightly for cleaning and refilling.

However, the Health Department required that she have a three compartment sink, a hand sink and a mop sink installed to do the cleaning on site downtown.

Psakaly says that the equipment would have cost $18,000 to install in the very small store.

At that point, she says she was pushed over the edge and the store was closed.

Chef's Olive Mix remains open at 131 J Street in Old Sac and can be found online at http://www.chefsolivemix.com.

More News:

Maalouf’s closed; diners rushed for one last taste of Lebanon - In the last few years, Maalouf’s father has had two heart attacks and a stroke. His daughter blames the demands of his work, standing at the kitchen’s grill five days a week for 13 years with no vacation. Abdul Maalouf has said for years that he would sell his business, she said, and when a couple of Chicago businessmen recently came to him with a second offer, he accepted it. The new owners plan to offer Middle Eastern cuisine at the same location. Cathie Anderson in Sac Bee.

Paragary's reopens, is beautiful - The space looks amazing—and amazingly different. What once felt like a dark pub is now open and bright, with higher ceilings, larger windows and a Parisian flair. Randy Paragary’s wife Stacy was highly involved in the design, inspired by travels to create a “riff on a French bistro meets English pub meet California modern,” she said. Floor tiles came from Vietnam; modern light fixtures from Los Angeles and Montreal; the walnut hostess stand is actually made from the restaurant’s old walls. The fireplace is gone; instead, indoor diners can appreciate a view of the still-gorgeous patio. Janelle Bitker in Sac News & Review.

Sacramento bar up for national industry award - Joining venues in cities such as New York and Chicago, Sacramento's Shady Lady Saloon is among 10 nominees for one of the cocktail industry's major awards. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

Continue reading "Dining News: RIP - Chef's Olive Mix on L Street Has Closed" »

Dining News: River City Brewing Co. to Close at Downtown Plaza This Week


River City Brewing Co.'s last day at Downtown Plaza will be June 14, co-owner Beth Ayres-Brio told Cowtown Eats earlier this week.

The restaurant will close for the summer and is expected to reopen at Carmichael's Milagro Centre around Labor Day.

I did a quick e-mail Q and A with Ayres-Brio as the restaurant wined down its operations at the future site of the Kings arena.

1. Do you have a message for your loyal downtown fans?

We will miss all of our downtown customers very much and appreciate all the love they have given us the past 22 years. We are excited that a lot of people who are customers during the day, while at work, actually live out by the new location, so we will still be seeing them still.

2. Are you offering your workers a job when you eventually reopen in Carmichael?

Yes all of my employees have a job waiting for them when we reopen. So far 75% have said they are coming.

3. Anything else that people should know?

People should be excited for our reopening with lots of exciting new things, that we have been waiting to do for the past few years and now we will have the opportunity to do so.

River City Brewing Co. is planning to go out with a bang. They're hosting a Last Hurrah Downtown party on Saturday, June 13. According to the Facebook event site, "the first 100 customers get free merchandise, there will be live music starting at 1pm, Oysters on the patio and lots of great people to hang out with!"

I've spent many Fridays enjoying their BBQ oysters on the patio and drinking their beer. While their space as a local brewery isn't as unique as it was 10 years ago, I'll always have a soft spot for the restaurant.

Until the end of the week, River City Brewing Co. is located at 545 Downtown Plaza and can be found online at http://www.rivercitybrewing.net/.

* Photo via their Facebook page.

More News:

Motherclucker: Everybody Loves Fried Chicken - Sacramentans who used to go nuts over bone marrow and uni have a new food obsession these days: fried chicken. It’s the dish of the moment, seemingly everywhere, popping up on menus all over the region. Featuring South, The Porch, Sticky Gator, Sandra Dee's Hawks, Ella, Cluck N Chuck and Empress Tavern. Marybeth Bizjak in Sac Mag.

Arcade Games are Paired with Craft Beers and Cocktaisl at the Coin-Op Game Room - The new Coin-Op Game Room may have a bouncer at the top of the stairs, but this is not a typical posh downtown bar. The wooden staircase winds down into a patio, where people are sipping drinks and playing a giant version of Jenga. Inside, the space strikes a nice balance between a trendy dive bar and a friendly neighborhood pub, with neon beer signs, slices of pizza served on brightly colored Frisbee plates and beer lists printed on chalkboards decorated with pictures of Mario and Luigi. A few people are gathered around the actual bar, but everyone else is clustered around the various arcade games that line the walls—about 40 in all. After Burner, Spy Hunter, Pac-Man, Donkey Kong, an entire row of pinball machines—this barcade is sure to stir up some feelings of nostalgia. Catherine Foss in Submerge Mag.

Mikuni plans new location in Folsom - This is the ninth sushi location for the restaurant group, which was founded in 1987. The group currently has seven eateries in the Sacramento region and one in Truckee. While most of its restaurants operate as Mikuni Japanese Restaurant & Sushi Bar, the group has Taro's at Arden Fair and Mikuni Kaizen at Fountains at Roseville. The concept for Folsom is being finalized as the group works on the kitchen space at the new location. Sonya Sorich in Sac Biz Journal.

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Dining News: The Waffle Experience in Natomas Getting Lots of Buzz

Waffle experienceThe Waffle Experience, owned by Marines vets in North Natomas and which opened a little over a month ago, is already getting buzz on the food blogs. Here's Catherine Enfield on Munchie Musings.

At Waffle Experience the waffle universe has been expanded to a whole new level...even beyond just the savory and sweet distinctions. The owners are making you think of waffles in a new and exciting way. In fact, in a minor way, they want you to think of waffles as just a crater-filled piece of bread and, like bread, can be used in every meal of the day as a super versatile ingredient...

Each morning the waffle batter is made from scratch. This is the yeast risen Belgian style waffle batter that they let rise for two days.  Michael will split the dough for sweet versus savory waffles.  He will then take some and add sweet or savory ingredients. For instance, cocoa waffles, rosemary infused, cheese and jalapeno.

Read the entire story on Munchie Musings.

The Waffle Experience was also featured for a second time on Good Day Sac.

VIDEO: The Waffle Experience - Tina Macuha is checking out the Waffle Experience that opened its doors this weekend. This new Natomas restaurant features over 29 different waffles on their menu! On Good Day Sac.

I haven't been out, but I might have to make it out to Natomas for weekend brunch soon.

The Waffle Experience is located at 4391 Gateway Park Blvd, Suite 650 and can be found online at TheWaffleExperience.com.

More News:

The Parlor: Ice Cream Puffs - A few minutes later she handed me my ice cream pressed inside a warm fritter. It was a bit Frankenstein-like as far as desserts go, but it was also flippin' delicious! Since then, I've heard that they started doing ice cream macaron sandwiches as well and plan to do ice creme brulee. Ally Gaffan on A Girl & Her Fork.

Trick Pony: A lame horse - Trick Pony has seen a fair share of drama for a restaurant so young. Loose lips and a change of ownership to be exact, but that’s neither here nor there. We’re here to talk about the food. So, how does this pizza shop, now resting in the husk of Tuli Bistro, fare? To be frank, not well. Garrett McCord in Sac News & Review.

West Sacramento's Pooja excels at Indian cuisine - But one thing seems certain at this juncture: If South Asian food whets your appetite, you need to give Pooja Indian Grill in West Sacramento a whirl. If you haven’t heard of it, put it on your radar. If you’ve never been, now is your chance. And if you have yet to try Indian food, what are you waiting for? Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Try It: Opa Opa's Falafel Platter - I’ve always been a fan of East Sacramento’s Opa Opa, a friendly, casual little spot on J Street that serves up radiantly fresh Greek and Mediterranean fare. My go-to menu favorites are the (dazzling garlicky) garlic chicken pita and the chewy, flavorful lamb souvlaki (kabobs), but this past weekend I expanded my horizons and tried Opa Opa’s falafel platter. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Sacramento's "Pasta Dave" at the Davis Farmers' Market - If you’re a Sacramento food aficionado, it’s likely that you’ve tried Dave Brochier’s pasta. Brochier, known by fans as “Pasta Dave,” launched his career at midtown’s lauded Mulvaney’s B&L before moving on to the now-defunct Tuli Bistro and then Land Park’s Taylor’s Market. On a recent visit to the Saturday Davis farmers’ market, I was surprised and delighted to see that Brochier now has his own booth, where he offers an array of his fresh, fabulous hand-crafted pastas to enthusiastic market-goers. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Continue reading "Dining News: The Waffle Experience in Natomas Getting Lots of Buzz" »

Dining News: Big Changes at Trick Pony, Capital Dime

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Just one month after Trick Pony opened and about three months after Capital Dime hired a new chef, the ownership group has decided to bring in the folks behind Broderick to help right the ship, scoops the Sac Bee's Blair Anthony Robertson.

Chris Jarosz, co-owner of Broderick and the popular food truck Wicked ’Wich, said he and his team will assume control of Capital Dime, a high-profile restaurant located at 1801 L St., and Trick Pony, a fledgling pizzeria at 2031 S St...

Jarosz said he fell into the orbit of Capital Dime and Trick Pony owners Rick Lobley and Melissa Sanchez after seeing them having a drink at Broderick’s bar. Sanchez left Jarosz a voice mail and they eventually began talking and hammering out details...

The Broderick owners now own a large, but undisclosed, stake in both eateries, which will undergo significant changes, Jarosz said.

Capital Dime will return to its original vision and become an “American-style tapas restaurant,” with many items sold a la carte at $10 – the “dime” price point initially trumpeted by Zonca. The restaurant, which had cut its hours and eliminated lunch service, will be closed for a few days for cleanup and minor remodeling. It is set to reopen next week for dinner only, and the following week for lunch and dinner seven days a week. The restaurant will also continue its weekend brunch.

Read the entire story in the Sac Bee.

I don't have strong feelings about Capital Dime. It underperformed during each of the (at least) 3 times I ate there, so the change in ownership/management is probably a good thing.

I do think that Trick Pony wasn't given enough time to find its clientele and hit its stride as a restaurant. While I obviously don't have insight into the financial condition of the restaurant, I enjoyed my initial visit to the restaurant, mostly because the pizza was unique to the region. But then again I wasn't the one (presumably) with an underperforming financial asset.

The new owners say they will revamp the pizza so it's a thin crust, New York or Italian style pizza (per the article), but there's enough of that in Sacramento. Could they eventually be a little better than Hot Italian or Masullo? Maybe, but that would all be variations on basically the same style of pizza. What Trick Pony was doing was both good and truly different in the market. If they get rid of the pizza they served, Sacramento would have lost some of its pizza diversity.

But with that said, like I did with Trick Pony, I'll try not to pre-judge the food. Maybe what the Broderick team has in store for us will be great, and Trick Pony 1.0's pizza will be just a pleasant memory.

** Update at about 11 p.m. on Monday night. Ran across these two bits of info as I was catching up on Twitter.

Secondly, Johnny Breedlove appears to be the new pizza chef at Trick Pony. His Twitter profile formerly read "Chef, Line Cook extraordinaire i cook food in sacramento. @broderick1893" now reads:


More News:

Roseville’s Sammy Hagar-themed restaurant to reopen - Roseville’s Sammy Hagar-themed restaurant is set to reopen in the fall after the legendary rock star’s two sons agreed to take over operations. Richard Chang in the Sac Bee.

Sammy Hagar may not be involved with Roseville Galleria spot - Sammy Hagar is increasing his involvement in a branded restaurant in downtown Roseville, but it’s not clear if that's the case for an eatery in the works at the Westfield Galleria at Roseville that was supposed to be affiliated with the rocker. Space at the mall that was going to be a 4,000-square-foot restaurant bearing Hagar’s name and likeness is instead up for grabs again, said Gina Jacobs of Edelman, which handles public relations for the Galleria. Ben van der Meer in Sac Biz Journal.

Popular Thai Restaurant in Natomas Closes - A popular Thai restaurant in Natomas has abruptly closed to the disappointment of loyal customers. According to legal documents posted by the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, Bangkok Garden has been evicted from its 3230 Arena Boulevard Suite 215 location effective June 15. On Natomas Buzz.

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Dining News: Paesanos Midtown Closed for Rennovation, to Reopen on Tuesday


Paesanos Midtown closed temporarily on Monday, Nov. 11 for a modest face lift and is scheduled to reopen tomorrow, owner Mark Scribner said in an interview on Sunday.

The impetus for the closure was the need to install new flooring in the kitchen. While they were closed, they decided to get some other work done, including:

  • New coat of paint
  • New art
  • Additional bench seating to allow for a more flexible dining area
  • New chandeliers
  • Doubling their taps from 6 to 12 with the addition of a glycol cooling system

Scribner (whose parents own local winery Scibner Bend) said they decided to do the work now since there's a slight lull between the end of the summer and the holiday season. The last renovation of the space was done 12 years ago in 2001.

The menu will also get a small update with the addition of a few more pastas, pizzas and salads.

Fans of the restaurant don't need to worry - the character of restaurant they love should remain the same after it reopens tomorrow. It'll just be a little freshened up.

More News:

Sacramento Breweries - We’ve made a couple recent trips to the Sacramento area and visited 6 breweries. Here’s a rundown on what to expect at each one. Featuring Sudwerk, River City, Hoppy, New Helvetia, Track 7 and Rubicon. On Grubulub.

Biba Still Dazzles - But a recent meal at Biba reminded me that it can be very rewarding to re-visit some of our region’s well-established local restaurants. I took a friend who had never eaten at this venerable Sacramento dining institution, and our meal was a dazzler. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

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