Streets of London

Dining News: Now Open - Fair Oaks Brew Pub

Fair Oaks Brew Pub soft opened this week, it announced on its Facebook Page.

This week, they'll only serve beer and wine, but the menu on their Web site promises to offer "Neopolitan pizzas, artisan salads, dried, cured meats and cheeses."

In the video above, owners Rich and Jayne Schmitt describe the renovations needed to turn the old Wells Fargo building into a brew pub, including restoring the building's facade to it's original surface by removing the siding and exposing the original stone surface.

For now, it's only open from 3 to 10 p.m. during its soft opening.

Fair Oaks Brew Pub can be found at 7988 California Ave. in Fair Oaks or online at

Thanks to Cowtown Eats reader @MullingHagel for the tip.

More News:

California Craft Beer Summit tickets on sale this Wednesday - Tickets for Sacramento’s inaugural California Craft Beer Summit, which include one of the largest beer festivals in the country, go on sale this Wednesday, March 18...Passes to taste some of the 150 breweries at the showcase ($60). Nick Miller in Sac News & Review.

Luck o' the Irish - Where to get a green beer on St. Patrick’s Day (March 17)? You can’t go wrong at an Irish pub. Among the best: Boxing Donkey Irish Pub and de Vere's Irish Pub. Bob Shallit in Sac Mag.

AUDIO: Friday Food Featuring Mulvaney's B&L - Located at 1215 19th Street, Mulveney's B&L offers hand-crafted, American cuisine with a whimsical style and a smile. But with St. Patrick's Day coming up, they brought us some Irish fare. Joining me now in studio is Patrick Mulvaney of Mulvany's B&L and local chef Adam Pechal. Kitty O'Neal on KFBK.

VIDEO: Hash Tacos - If you're down for the traditional Irish food such as corn beef and cabbage, then you'll love a new twist with tacos at Florez Bar & Grill. Cambi Brown on Good Day Sac.

VIDEO: Irish Tacos - Today Chef Jonah Messenger of 36 Handles joins us in studio to make Irish tacos! Lori Wallace on Good Day Sac.

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Dining News: Vic's Cafe Plans to Serve Beer and Wine in New Year


Vic's Cafe, the addition to the beloved ice cream parlor next door, has applied for a license to sell beer and wine, Cowtown Eats learned in a visit over the weekend.

The cafe, not yet a year old, plans to expand its evening business by serving alcohol. Since its opening, it has expanded from a very limited menu serving just coffee and breakfast pastries to lunch items such as wraps. This is the latest in their expansion plans, although they are not yet sure if they will expand their hours.

As a neighborhood resident, I'm very excited for another venue to grab a beer or a glass of wine within walking distance. Just a week ago, a group of friends and I had dinner at Masullo and wanted another after dinner drink, but felt guilty taking up table space with a line of diners waiting to eat. Nearby Riverside Clubhouse wasn't a real option since their bar is always busy on the weekend. We settled on Iron Grill, an adequate choice, but with a limited wine list.

Per the store personnel, the public notice has to be up at least 3 months before they can start serving alcohol. The posting went up on Oct. 20, which means that the end of January is the earliest they can start serving beer and wine. The type of liquor they've applined for will not allow Vic's to serve hard liquor.

I hope the Vic's Cafe team builds a great wine and beer program. The demographics of the neighborhood would certainly support a sophisticated and unique menu.

I can't wait to finally have a place that I can walk home from after several drinks.

Vic's Cafe is located at 3193 Riverside Blvd., and can be found online at

More News:

Shady Lady owners take over Monte Carlo Club - One of Sacramento’s oldest bars will debut in February with a new name and ownership team. The owners of Shady Lady Saloon at 14th and R streets – Jason Boggs, Alex Origoni and Garrett Van Vleck – have taken over the Monte Carlo Club a block away at 15th and S streets. The bar, which is undergoing a remodel, will debut in February with a new name, B-Side. Bret Bair, co-owner of Ace of Spades music club and Goldfield Trading Post, serves as the landlord. Chris Macias in the Sac Bee.

Streets of London changes owners, but fish ’n’ chips stay great - The recent newspaper ad caught our attention: “Keep calm. We are under new ownership.” Egad! Nobody called to tell us. Turns out the time-tested Streets of London Pub has simplified its name to Streets, expanded its menu and slicked-up its logo to show profiles of Sacramento’s Tower Bridge and the Tower Bridge in London. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

The Best Thing Since Sliced Bread - I have loved sandwiches since I was a little kid.  Growing up in Ireland, my Mom always made me a packed lunch to take to school, a tradition she continued well into my high school years.  Everyone at school knew about my mom’s sandwiches, and she would often make me extras to share with “the boarders”—the students who lived in dormitory during the week and supplemented their cafeteria diet with large quantities of sugary snacks from the tuck shop.  The best sandwich my mom made, (and I’m hoping she will make when I visit over the holidays, wink!) is the roast chicken sandwich, which includes white and dark meat, sausage stuffing, arugula, mayonnaise, and a few slivers of red onion.  This was usually served on a perfectly fresh and crunchy French baguette.  I think because my mother is an artist and interior designer, she can’t help but express her superior understanding of the intricacies of flavor and texture and proportion even when making a humble sandwich. Featuring Dad's Sandwiches, Cafe Rolle, Corti Brothers, Juno's Deli & Mr. Pickles. Laurn Norton on Girls on the Grid.

Try It: Evan's Kitchen & Catering - Tuck into the kitchen’s superb omelets (I’m partial to the rib-sticking “Evan’s Favorite,” packed full of ground beef, spinach and mushrooms and doused with chunky country gravy) or choose from a delectable selection of creative Benedicts (don’t miss the indulgent version prepared with crab cakes). Other starring dishes include a rustic, fabulous housemade corned beef hash; and the cinnamon-kissed Texas-style French toast. Kira O'Donnell in Sac Mag.

Drought-defying tomato harvest breaks California record - In a year when most commodities saw declines in production, the tomato crop was 16 percent larger than last year. It surpassed the old record of 13.3 million tons harvested in 2009, according to the California Tomato Growers Association. Dale Kasler in the Sac Bee.

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Dining Deals: Arthur Henry's Supper Club, Whiskey Tasting at Block Butcher Bar


Arthur Henry's Supper Club has been open since December, and I've found it to be a novel concept and a great place to go with friends. If they can survive as Oak Park continues to gentrify, I think they'll be very successful.

But in the mean time, they need more people to try the place out. I bought one, and if you haven't been there yet, you should too.

More Deals:

Bonus Deal:

Dining News: RIP Gatsby's Diner

Gatsby's Diner, which was once featured on Food Network's Diner's, Dives and Drive Ins, closed over the weekend.

Owner David Perez confirmed that Sunday was the restaurant's final day in a short interview on Saturday afternoon.

"We're looking to make a change," said Perez, explaining that he and his business partner are architect and engineers. "We're taking a breath."

Perez also said that in the future, they may look to do something smaller scale, possibly a food truck.

In 2010, the Sac News & Review's Garrett McCord gave the restaurant a three star review. "Gatsby’s accomplishes what any diner sets out to do: The servers are entertaining and professional, and the burgers more than meet expectations," wrote McCord.

Former chef and part owner Jerad Nutall told Cowtown Eats in Aug. 2013 that he had left the restaurant at the end of 2012.

I've eaten there only once (on a half off deal), and I thought it was a nice neighborhood diner. I'm sure those who live in that part of town will miss it.

Gatsby's Diner was located at 2598 Alta Arden Expressway.

More News:

Ode to the Emerald Isle - St. Patrick’s Day returns on Monday, when the Irish- and British-themed pubs in town will pour plenty of Guinness and serve plates heaped with corned beef and cabbage. Among our favorite pubs on the “day of the green” is Brownie’s Lounge, where the vibe is old-school and the décor is, well, vintage. Owner Clair Brown reckons he’s cooked more than 275,000 pounds of corned beef during his 30-year career, and it shows – his version is among the best in town. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee. (second item)

Sacramento's top female chefs dish on why a woman's place is in the kitchen; Forget Betty Crocker—local women chefs talk food, the ’pink ghetto' and breaking into the good ol' boys club - Kelley may talk about her accomplishments casually, but achieving chef status is no small feat—especially when going against a pervasively masculine kitchen environment, a stereotype that women belong in pastry and common pressures to start a family. Janelle Bitker in Sac News & Review.

New York’s James Beard House savors Sacramento - Thursday’s meal began with hors d’oeuvres that included fois gras on toast and potato chips cradling Elverta-based Sterling caviar. Pre-dinner drinks included beers from Sacramento microbreweries Ruhstaller, Rubicon, Track 7 and Knee Deep. Five courses followed, including abalone served with “first favas” that were grown by students at Sacramento High School (part of the Edible Sac High program), rack of lamb from Dixon with crunchy spears of Delta asparagus, and sturgeon from Sloughhouse’s Passmore Ranch with shredded black trumpet mushrooms. Classic Sacramento ingredients such as rice shared plates with seared pork belly. The meal concluded with a jubilee dessert featuring local strawberries. David Barton in the Sac Bee.

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3 Ways to Celebrate New Year Eve Early


The traditional way to celebrate the ringing in of the New Year is at midnight. Some people (especially those with kids) have taken to celebrating East Coast midnight at 9 p.m. local, and then heading home with the rug rats.

But if you're either looking to kick off a legendary night of partying or looking for a low key way to celebrate before the drunks hit the road, there are 3 area drinking establishments who are celebrating the UK New Year at 4 p.m. PST.

  • de Vere's will be celebrating the Dublin New Year at 4 p.m. and then later at midnight with a champagne or whiskey toast at both their Sacramento and Davis locations. Click here for more info.
  • Streets of London will ring in the New Year with Big Ben at 4 p.m., and then again at midnight. Click here for more info.
  • 36 Handles in El Dorado Hills will also be celebrating twice - once at (you guessed it) 4 p.m. with bagpipes and a complimentary champagne toast and again at midnight. Click here for more info.

As for me, I'll be hitting up the crab feed at Virgin Sturgeon crab feed. Let's see if, after gorging myself with all I can eat, I can make it to midnight.

Whatever you do, I hope you have tons of fun, be safe, and have a happy new year!

Dining News: 12,000 Reasons The Broiler & Gallagher's Closed


To paraphrase former Football star Terrell Owens' publicist, The Broiler's & Gallagher's owner had 12,000 monthly reasons that they had to close. Per Sac Bee's Allen Pierleoni:

The Broiler closed it doors after a long-brewing perfect storm of financial woes that included increasing debt that had accumulated to an average outlay of $12,000 a month, Lords said.

Also, the operation never recovered from the death of Lords’ wife and business partner, Marilou, in August 2012, “the heart and soul of the business,” he said. “She took care of the menus, the guest relations and the staff. I could handle the back of the house fine, but (her part) was starting to slip pretty badly.”

The restaurant, now in Chapter 7 bankruptcy, was battered by the national financial-meltdown years of 2007, 2008 and 2009. “Business steadily fell those three years, by 18 percent, then 22 percent, then 26 percent. I should have closed then, but I figured if I could just keep going long enough, we could get through it and rebuild...”

Over recent years, Lords fell behind on the rent and faced multiple tax liens. “I put everything I had in it to keep it floating,” he said. “I emptied my IRA and sold my wife’s car. There was nothing else I could put in and nowhere I could borrow.”

Pierleoni also reports on a late attempt to sell the restaurant to a new ownership group that fell through.

Read the entire touching story in the Sac Bee.

More News:

Veteran sushi chef to open Sacramento eatery in former Una Mas location - Sushi chef Lou Valente is finally opening the restaurant that he's dreamed about for the last three years, taking over the spot once occupied by Una Mas Mexican Grill at 2801 P St. in Sacramento. He took the keys to the place on Jan. 1 and has spent eight months on design, renovation and government paperwork. If you pass by Lou's Sushi, check out the logo on the windows. Inside the bold red lines, you'll see Valente's face beaming back at you. Cathie Anderson in the Sac Bee.

Español Italian Restaurant: Keep it in the family - The real revelation here is the marinara sauce. Made on-site, it’s a fresh, chunky blend of ripe tomatoes and herbs. Every entree comes with a plate of nicely cooked pasta bathed in this ambrosial sauce. A dish of ravioli is OK on its own, but topped with the house-made marinara, it invites plate licking. Ann Martin Rolke in Sac News & Review.

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