Dining News: RIP Wicked West Pizza's Jefferson Location


Wicked West Pizza and BBQ, a neighborhood favorite with positive reviews, closed its location on Jefferson Blvd. in West Sac just before Thanksgiving.

Their newer location at the Ikea shopping center in West Sac remains opening.

In a Facebook post, the owners said the Jefferson location wasn't enough business to sustain that space.

Despite the unwavering support of so many, our resources were nonetheless underutilized at this location. We are hoping all of you will come visit us at our Ikea location to help give this new venture a healthy start. We’ve listened to your comments and are trying our hardest to refine our new location into a place you’ll love.

Here's what Sac Mag said about the pizza joint back in August 2012:

This lively spot offers an arcade for the younger members of the family; and parents will be thrilled with the menu, which is built upon organic, locally-sourced ingredients. The briskly-selling barbecued items (from hand-pulled pork and beef tri-tip to roasted chicken) are all hickory-smoked on the premises; and the pizzas feature some fun and interesting combinations.

Wicked West Pizza & BBQ's Ikea location, which opened April 2015, is located at 771 Ikea Ct. and can be found online at

* Photo via their Facebook page.

More News:

Gift ideas for the craft beer geek in your life - Beer and beer-related stuff make great gifts. But don’t go beer shopping without some idea of what you’re looking for. With hundreds of labels staring back at you, there’s just too much going on to sort through it all. One wrong move – showing up at a Christmas gathering looking all smug because you brought a case of Blue Moon and a bunch of orange slices, for instance – can have lasting ramifications. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Feast Q&A: TableVine brings a wine-country vibe to downtown - As its name implies, a wine-country vibe infuses TableVine, downtown Sacramento’s newest “casual dining” restaurant. But those inspirational vineyards go far beyond California, and TableVine is working on a wine list to match. “It’s just in its infancy, but it’s a world (wine) list,” explained Dan Sneed, TableVine’s owner. “The food is meant to go with the wine on our list." Debbie Arrington in the Sac Bee.

Eat cheap, and well, across the Causeway - The problem with inexpensive restaurants that cater to students, however, is that they’re so filled with students. But many Aggies are out of town this Thanksgiving weekend, and they will clear out in droves when UC Davis starts its winter break Dec. 14. So go on, curious but post- or non-academic Sacramentans and Dixonites: Descend on Davis, where one can eat like a king or queen on a crisp $20 bill. Or at least like an engineering student with a discriminating palate. Carla Meyer in the Sac Bee.

Learning what's new at Seasons 52 - Oftentimes restaurant managers are so busy running their restaurant that you don't get to have time for a good conversation. But when you get the chance, it can be very informative. Such was the case this week when I went to check out Seasons 52's new winter menu. Catherine Enfield on Munchie Musings.

Paragary proposes six-story boutique hotel in midtown - With Sacramento's economy improving and the expanded hospital serving as a magnet for business, Paragary is scrapping plans to renovate the building and now plans to raze it. "I finally made the leap to demolish the building and start from scratch," he said. The ground floor of the new building would feature a Cafe Bernardo and Monkey Bar. Ben van der Meer in Sac Biz Journal.

Continue reading "Dining News: RIP Wicked West Pizza's Jefferson Location" »

Dining News: Now Open - TableVine, Replacing Bistro Michel


TableVine opened on Monday, it announced on Facebook.

The Sac News & Review's Janelle Bitker has more:

The exterior has been painted fern green. Inside, there’s a new cream-colored limestone wall, a pervading neutral color palette and vases full of burgundy-stained wine corks. It looks brighter, more open and gives off a wine country vibe, which is exactly TableVine’s goal.

The executive chef is Scott McNamara, who actually headed the kitchen at Bistro Michel during its most critically-acclaimed years. He left Bistro Michel to open Brasserie Capitale, which has also received generally favorable reviews. At TableVine, he’ll no longer be preparing classic French cuisine, rather, eclectic European fare. Farm-to-fork? Of course.

Read the entire story in Sac News & Review.

TableVine is located at 1501 14th Street, and can be found online at

More News:

Family closes two-generation Sacramento tofu business - For decades, the Kunishi family were faithful servants to soybeans. Because a livelihood based on fresh tofu means the soybeans are always calling, ready to be rinsed and soaked, then pressed into a thick milk that ultimately transforms into soft tofu. Holiday dinners, birthday celebrations, a much-needed evening of rest – much of this often played secondary to the high-maintenance needs of the beans. But in turn, the soybeans were good to the Kunishis. The family’s Sacramento Tofu Co. nourished generations of Sacramentans with its freshly made products. And the business nurtured its owners, one bushel of beans at a time, providing for college educations and food on their own tables. Chris Macias in the Sac Bee.

The Dollar-Wise Gourmet: 'Tis the Season to Eat Cheaply at Westfield Galleria's Food Court - If your holiday shopping spree includes a romp through Roseville’s biggest shopping mall, Westfield Galleria, you’ll have no problem finding places to refuel. This high-end mall offers everything from sit-down meals at upscale restaurants (Il Fornaio, anyone?) to grab-and-go pretzels at Auntie Anne’s. For this month’s column, though, I went straight to the center of the action: the food court. It’s an especially nice one, with some 15 eateries and virtually every kind of cuisine, from Greek to Thai. While steering clear of McDonald’s, Rubio’s and Panda Express (we figured you already know about those), The Boyfriend and I sampled something at nearly every other venue, with one caveat: The price ceiling was $8. This immediately ruled out several eateries, including the Mongolian barbecue place, where noodle bowls start at $8.65, and Aria Kabob Cuisine, where prices are $8.99 and up. Here’s what we liked best. Cathy Cassinos-Carr in Sac Mag.

Feast Q&A: Dinner for 12, or a party of 150 - Sacramento caterers Dio and Terese Esperas are ready for the holiday-party season. The husband-wife owners of A Healthy Kitchen specialize in planning and cooking dinners at private parties for 12 to 150 guests. They also host group cooking classes and demonstrations in private homes, and teach cooking at the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Lao-Thai Cafe: A better Thai game - Located near Vampire Penguin and Happy Day Spa, Lao-Thai Cafe took over the old Thai-Thai Express location. It opened about seven months with local legend Yee (no last name needed—or given, SN&R asked) in the kitchen. She used to prepare food from her house and developed a cult following...Everything we tried was fantastic—expertly prepared, layered with flavor and generously portioned. When it’s busy, service can be slow, but get in early and order widely. It’s worth the trip. Ann Martin Rolke in Sac News Review.

VIDEO: Prepping the turkey - Chef Evan Elsberry from Evan's Kitchen shows you how to get the turkey ready. Brian Hickey on KCRA.

Continue reading "Dining News: Now Open - TableVine, Replacing Bistro Michel" »

Dining News: TableVine to Replace Bistro Michel


TableVine, a restaurant serving a regional wine country menu, will replace Bistro Michel and will open early next month, Cowtown Eats has learned.

"Our cleaning and cosmetic remodeling has been at a fever pitch as of late," owner Dan Sneed told Cowtown Eats via e-mail. "Trying to make our opening by the end of the month, but had one other [set]back so we hope to be open by the first week of November instead at this point."

The chef for the restaurant will be Scott McNamara, who recently left Brasserie Capitale. He was also the chef for several years at Bistro Michel. In 2011, under chef McNamara, then Sac Bee dining critic Blair Anthony Robertson raved about his cooking.

Enough about the fries (though you must get them as a side dish if they don't come with your entree). The mussels are also delicieux. On a different night, dining inside with an old friend and colleague, the two of us couldn't get enough of these mussels, fresh and clean and in broth so full of flavor we couldn't resist using our bread to sop it up. Again, there are no shortcuts to something this good.

Cowtown Eats first brought you news of the new restaurant in late August. In that post, we learned that Sneed:

[I]ntends to serve the clientele south of the State Capitol, which tends to have fewer fancy lobbyists and more rank and file state workers. He's aiming to hit a $20 price point for the dinner crowd and emphasize service.

In addition to Pearl on the River, Sneed has worked at Ella from 2008 to 2010, The Park from 2005 to 2007, San Francisco's Gary Danko from 1999 to 2005 and The Dining Room at The Ritz-Carlton in San Francisco from 2000 to 2001.

On the restaurant's Facebook page, Sneed has done a great job chronicling the progress of the restaurant as it works its way towards opening. I look forward to giving the place a try.

TableVine will be located at 1501 14th Street.

More News:

Suburban destination - Slowly but surely, the Milagro Centre is coming to fruition. Last week, the Sacramento Bee’s Bob Shallit reported that the upcoming Carmichael marketplace is finally full. One of the puzzle’s final pieces is Fish Face Poke Bar & Market from Kru’s Billy Ngo. It’s another outpost of his wildly popular poke restaurant on R Street, only this edition will also feature a small specialty grocery section. Janelle Bitker in Sac News & Review.

Can prestigious beer festival prizes translate into profits? - Now that the brewery on Broadway has two very prestigious medals, the phones are ringing off the hook, craft beer fiends are lined up down the street and New Helvetia’s beer is flying off store shelves throughout the region. Right? Not quite. At least not yet. Blair Anthony Robertson in the Sac Bee.

Food 101 - No matter where you look, class is officially in session. That goes for your casual culinary education, too. Lucca Restaurant & Bar (1615 J Street) is hosting a multipart, weekly lecture series called Food 101, featuring a variety of food experts who aren't your expected chefs or restaurateurs. Janelle Bitker in Sac News & Review.

VIDEO: Food Photo Secrets - We have secrets to taking good food photos. Cambi Brown on Good Day Sac.

Hank Shaw to self-publish next book - Hunter-forager-food blogger and cookbook author Hank Shaw of Sacramento is preparing his third wild-game cookbook – after “Hunt, Gather, Cook” and “Duck, Duck, Goose” – to be on bookstore shelves by August 2016, at the start of deer-hunting season in California. For this one, though, he left the mainstream-publishing path for the riskier self-publishing trail, turning to the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter. Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.

Continue reading "Dining News: TableVine to Replace Bistro Michel" »