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Restaurant Openings Report: Week of June 1, 2014

Restaurant Openings Report: Week of June 1, 2014

Every week, we take a look at some of the restaurants that have opened or will soon open across the country. Here’s this week’s roundup:

Oakland, Calif:

This summer, Jack’s Oyster Bar & Fish House, the second restaurant concept from Rick Hackett and Meredith Melville, will open in Oakland’s Jack London Square. The restaurant will feature seasonal and sustainable ingredients, and serve chowders, crudos, ceviches, and whole fish dishes of the day. A semi-private dining room will accommodate groups up to 36 and a waterfront patio will seat approximately 32 guests.

New York City:

Broadway Bites: The Greeley Square-centric food market is back for the summer season and includes new vendors like Brooklyn Taco, Onigiri by Tampopo, and others. Head toward to statue of Horace Greeley to start, and enjoy options from a huge lineup of delicious “market” options.

Landhaus at The Woods: The ”farm to sandwich and grilled maple bacon sticks Smorgasburg fixture” has finally launched in its own space on South 4th Street in Williamsburg. In addition to a professional kitchen, The Woods’ courtyard now includes indoor and outdoor beer garden-style seating.

Mexicue has just unveiled a newly built, state-of-the-art, 3000-square-foot catering facility located in Williamsburg. The team is also opening a new brick-and-mortar location at 1440 Broadway (at 40th Street).

David Burke fabrick: The latest restaurant concept from David Burke is now open at the brand new Archer Hotel New York. A combination of rustic American dishes and innovative small plates and specialty cocktails are all available. The restaurant also has its own beef dry-aging room lined with pink Himalayan salt, and a wood-burning oven.

ReViVer: Opening June 10, a new restaurant in the realm of “fine casual” wants you to know that “there is absolutely no penalty for eating well. The menu aims to be the ideal union of culinary arts and nutritional science, and spent two years in development.

Ambrose Hall: Now open at South Street Seaport, Ambrose Hall, along with the adjacent Ambrose Beer Garden and Ambrose Hall Surf Club, offers amenities like outdoor seating and massive flat-screen TVs for sporting events. Menu items like charcuterie plates and German-style bratwurst are complemented by a rotation of 12 seasonal beers.

Las Vegas:

Giada, the first restaurant from Food Network star Giada De Laurentiis, has officially opened inside The Cromwell on the Las Vegas Strip. The menu features classic Italian dishes with Californian influences. “My family was a big inspiration and you can see their influence in the art, décor and dishes. Between the breathtaking view and the delicious food, I hope my guests will feel that Giada captures the kind of atmosphere that brings that Vegas energy to life,” said De Laurentiis of the new venture.


L’echon Brasserie from Pubbelly Restaurant Group is slated to open at the Hilton Cabana Miami Beach this summer. The 130-seat restaurant will include an oceanfront outdoor patio and serve breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner.


The Perfectionists' Café from Heston Blumenthal is officially open at new Terminal 2, The Queen's Terminal at Heathrow. The menu features “a selection of not only the UK’s most popular dishes,” but also “favourites of the busy traveller, dishes that by their very nature are best cooked at speed.”

Karen Lo is an associate editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @appleplexy.

Portland’s robust restaurant scene about to get a lot more crowded

Residents and visitors will be served a big helping of new places to try this spring and summer.

This is the time of year we put away our crockpots, which have been cranking out soups and stews all winter, and gingerly step back outside into a snow-free world filled with new restaurants to try. Yes, we know you still haven’t caught up on last year’s crop of new restaurants, or maybe even the year before, considering the wild pace at which Portland restaurants have multiplied in recent years. This year is no exception, and the newcomers are all over the culinary map – Thai, Korean, Spanish, Vietnamese, Japanese and, of course, American.

One thread running through three of these new ventures – and already a national trend – is the interest in communal “large-format dining:” shareable, family-style meals that typically feed several people. Chef Mourad Lahlou of San Francisco’s Mourad described its appeal to Open Table this way: “The act of eating from the same vessel is extremely powerful. It’s unifying you just feel this togetherness.”

Or, as another San Francisco chef, Chris Cosentino, put it to Bon Appetit last year: “It’s like having Thanksgiving on a whim.” Another notable thread? Lots of new Asian options coming to the Portland area.

Here’s a sampling of new restaurants coming to Portland and South Portland this spring and summer. Dig in.


North 43 Bistro, the restaurant that’s replacing Joe’s Boathouse at the Spring Point Marina in South Portland, may be on the waterfront, but don’t expect a seafood-heavy menu.

Chef Stephanie Brown, who co-owns the restaurant with Laura Argitis (owner of Old Port Sea Grill), says that while she will serve fish, hers will be an “American bistro” menu with Asian, French and Tuscan influences. “It’s going to be relatable food,” Brown said, “nothing that is overly extravagant and you don’t know what it is you’re eating. It’s all food that is uncomplicated but full of flavors. We will always have a steak on the menu. We’ll have a burger during the day. We’re trying to appeal to all palates under one roof.” That roof comes with a great view that, come summertime, can be enjoyed from an outside deck that seats 30 or an upstairs cocktails-only deck. The dining room, which has lots of windows that look out on the marina, seats 100.

North 43 Bistro will be open for lunch and dinner, beginning the first week of June.

1 Spring Point Drive, South Portland

Kim Lully and Sunny Chung’s new Korean-American restaurant, YOBO, is scheduled to open at the end of May.

Theatergoers lost a favorite venue for a pre-show dinner when Bibo’s Madd Apple Cafe, next to Portland Stage Co., closed at the new year. Now that void will be filled by YOBO, a Korean-American restaurant scheduled to open at the end of May.

The owners, Sunny Chung and his wife, Kim Lully, previously owned two restaurants in New Hampshire: the Korean Place in Manchester for about 10 years, followed by Sunny’s Table in Concord, which the couple sold in November. They now live in Portland, closer to home for Lully, who grew up in northern Maine and still has family in Caribou and South China.

YOBO, she says, “loosely translates into a greeting between husband and wife in the Korean culture. We always joke that at my house, it means ‘Yes, dear.’ ” The menu at the 35-seat restaurant will be Korean, but with a few twists to make it more accessible to people who are unfamiliar with the cuisine. It will serve dinner only, to start. A sample menu includes dishes such as a mu shu smoked duck and a “Maine Italian” pork belly bahn mi. But the focus, the Chungs say, will be on two Korean favorites: bibimbop, the traditional dish of rice mixed with vegetables, meat and an egg, and served in a stone crock that makes the rice deliciously crunchy and bo ssam – tender, spicy pork wrapped in lettuce or other vegetable leaves with a variety of accompaniments.

“We’ll do a group bo ssam, and it will feed two to four people,” Kim Chung said. “It will be kind of like a lettuce wrap picnic that you’ll be able to have right here at the restaurant with everything that goes along with it – the condiments, the kimchee, the sauces.”


Caterer Ryan Carey lives near the old Taco Trio space on outer Forest Avenue in Portland, and when the Mexican eatery closed last year, he was just as unhappy as everyone else in the neighborhood. So he decided to fill the restaurant void himself: He is moving his busy wood-fired meat catering business, Fire and Company, into the building and opening a 26-seat restaurant, Noble Barbecue.

Carey, who started out with mobile, wood-fired pizza ovens that he took to fairs and festivals, has spent the past couple of years traveling to such holy grail barbecue states as Tennessee, Texas and the Carolinas to hone his craft. His Portland menu will feature wood-smoked meats by the half-pound, 10 or so signature, barbecue-themed sandwiches, Belgian fries and eight local beers on draft. He wants to keep prices in line with Taco Trio’s, so those hefty barbecue sandwiches will sell for $9-$12. Customers can dine in or take out. The opening day is scheduled for June 13.

Search for Fire and Company on Facebook


Vien Dobui and his wife, Jessica Sheahan moved to Portland from San Francisco a few years ago to help their friends open Tandem Coffee Roasters and Tandem Bakery. Now it’s their turn. They are opening Cong Tu Bot, a Vietnamese restaurant under development in the historic Nissen building in Portland. The 30-seat restaurant is scheduled to open in mid- to late May.

“Vien has been cooking off and on for the past eight years or so, and it was always his dream to have a Vietnamese restaurant,” Sheahan said. “The timing just seemed right.”

(The couple is also about to give birth to a second joint project – their first child.)

Dobui was born in the United States after his parents came over from Vietnam in the early 1980s, several years after the Vietnam War ended. He grew up in San Jose, which, according to the 2010 U.S. census, has the largest population of Vietnamese-Americans in the United States.

Jessica Sheahan and Vien Dobui at the site of their future Vietnamese restaurant, Cong Tu Bot.

Dobui stage-ed, or interned, in several restaurants in San Francisco. Then, about five years ago, he traveled to Vietnam to visit his extended family. He cooked for four months in his uncle’s noodle restaurant and spent time exploring and eating Vietnamese food. In Maine, he has worked at Palace Diner and the recently closed Roustabout, in addition to Tandem.

The menu at Cong Tu Bot will be small and tightly focused. It will include noodle dishes commonly found in Saigon, accompanied by side dishes and snacks. Sheahan, who will run the front of the house, said they will start with dinner only. She has worked as a cheesemaker and a farm apprentice, and at a number of restaurants, including Roustabout.

What does Cong Tu Bot mean? It’s an old-fashioned Vietnamese nickname that Dobui’s older cousins gave to him when he was a kid. “It’s just poking fun at somebody at who is maybe a little fancy, who doesn’t like to get their hands dirty,” Sheahan said. “He’s just trying to reclaim the name.”

59 Washington Ave., Portland

Chaval is the new incarnation of Caiola’s, a popular neighborhood restaurant on Portland’s West End.

Damian Sansonetti and Ilma Lopez, already the owners of Piccolo, an Italian restaurant in Portland, bought the restaurant last summer and kept things as they were for seven months so they could get to know their potential new customers and not scare them away with too many changes too fast. “It’s just respectful,” Lopez said. But they closed Caiola’s over the winter and have been busy since then carrying out their own vision with extensive renovations and a research trip to Spain.

Chaval’s menu will be focused on French and Spanish food. The couple were classically French trained, and both spent many years working for famed New York City chef/restaurateur Daniel Boulud. Sansonetti has spent kitchen time in Paris, and Lopez is a veteran of a couple of Spanish restaurants, including the famous El Bulli. But they say Chaval will be a more approachable, casual place, with family-friendly prices – similar to places they visited on their recent 10-day trip to northern Spain, with stops in San Sebastian and the Rioja wine region.

“There’s a part of me that just loves Spanish food and the style of it,” Sansonsetti said, “and the sense of family and how voracious they are with life, and how much they celebrate it when they are together.”

That family sensibility will translate into a few larger dishes that feed a group – a braised beef shank that feeds two to four, for example, or a whole coil of sausage served with a couple of sides that can feed an entire family.

Ilma Lopez and Damian Sansonetti at Piccolo in 2014.

The new restaurant is named, in a way, after their daughter. They named their first restaurant Piccolo because she was just 2 weeks old when they signed their lease, and piccolo means “small” in Italian. She is now 3 years old, and Chaval, opening in May, means “kid” in Spanish.

Lopez’ family is from Venezuela, so why not open a Venezuelan restaurant?

Cheevitdee, a 37-seat restaurant in Portland’s Old Port, will serve Thai food with a healthy twist. Cheevitdee means “Good Life,” explains Nuttaya Suriyayanyong, who co-owns the restaurant with her cousin, Darit Chandpen. (Chandpen also owns Mi Sen Noodle Bar on Congress Street.)

Suriyayanyong explained that Cheevitdee will serve low-sodium dishes made with organic ingredients. Most of the food will be steamed – never fried. The menu will offer chicken, shrimp, fish and tofu, but no pork or beef. Entrees on a sample menu include Ping Ngob, a grilled seafood curry with rice wrapped in banana leaves, and salmon choo chee, a red curry salmon with kaffir lime leaves.

Cheevitdee won’t serve white rice. Rather, it will be a deep purple Thai variety known as riceberry, which is rich in antioxidants, fiber and minerals. Cheevitdee may be open as early as next week, depending on when the last health inspection is done, and will serve both lunch and dinner. The family will do the cooking themselves.

Jie Ming Liang wants you to get your kicks at his new fast casual, Asian fusion restaurant, 66s Fusion. The Portland restaurant is named after the famous Route 66, and Liang envisions a chain of restaurants all across America, “from the East to the West.” Another 66s is already under development in New York. (The “s” in the name is silent but indicates his plan for more than one restaurant, Liang said.)

The menu includes sushi, teppanyaki grill, ramen noodles and an Asian meat bun – all with prices ending in 66. An order of udon noodles, for example, will cost $7.66, while an order of teriyaki chicken or shrimp will be priced at $5.66.

Open for lunch and dinner, 66s Fusion will have about a dozen tables, with bar seating for 10 to 12 more. Liang had hoped to open at the end of April, but remodeling issues have pushed the opening day into May.


Old Port Lobster Shack, a string of California restaurants licensed under the same name and concept, announced a couple of years ago that it was coming to the original Old Port. Then, silence. So what happened? It’s complicated. The restaurateur who started the company, Russell Deutsch, was arrested in California last spring for tax evasion, according to several news accounts. But Michael Michalski, who is the licensee of the Portland branch and holds the long-term lease on the space here, says the real reason for the delay is that he’s been busy working with the West Coast restaurants, including one that opened in February in the Sacramento area. The Fore Street location is back under construction, and Michalski hopes to open for business in June or July. “This time we are determined to get it done,” he said.

Chad Conley of Palace Diner is working to open an as yet unnamed restaurant on Forest Avenue in Portland.


Blyth & Burrows is a cocktail bar, not a restaurant, but it will have a raw bar and food will be an important focus, according to a recent press release. Well-known local bartender Joshua Miranda, the owner, has hired an executive chef and executive sous chef/fish monger from Napa Valley, Calif. to oversee the food. Blyth & Burrows will open in May on 26 Exchange St.

Bujabelle, opening this spring at 249 St. John St., will cater to Portland’s growing Central African population, according to partners Jerome Niryumwami, Thierry Mugabe and Jean Claude Nitunga. The proposed menu includes sambusas, salmon cubes, beignets, fried meatballs, and goat meat.

Joshua Miranda’s Blyth and Burrows will open in May.

Chad Conley’s as yet unnamed restaurant on Forest Avenue is making progress, but Conley, co-owner of the Palace Diner in Biddeford, doesn’t want to give any details, even the name or concept, for another few weeks. He will work at the new place as well as at Palace Diner, he said, but he is searching for a sous chef and kitchen manager for the new restaurant.

Island Creek Oysters, based in Duxbury, Mass., will open a retail shop and restaurant at 123 Washington Ave. in Portland by June. The restaurant will sell oysters from Maine and Massachusetts waters.

Little Giant, a mid-priced, family-oriented restaurant from Briana and Andrew Volk, owners of the Portland Hunt & Alpine Club, will serve dinner every day and breakfast on the weekends. The 60-seat restaurant, opening in May on 211 Danforth St., will feature “Continental European” food and offer shareable, large-format dishes. It will be the kind of place you can bring your family and still enjoy a good cocktail, Briana Volk says. Imbibe 75 named it one of its “Places to Watch” in 2017.

Lio, a wine-focused restaurant at 3 Spring St. in Portland, is unlikely to open until around Labor Day, according to Chris Peterman, director of operations and sommelier for chef Cara Stadler’s restaurant group, Eighty-Ate Hospitality. The group owns Tao Yuan in Brunswick and Bao Bao Dumpling House in Portland.

Mami, the long-awaited brick-and-mortar version of the popular Portland food truck, is scheduled to open Thursday at 339 Fore Street in Portland. Austin Miller and Hannah Tamaki will be serving okonomiyaki, yakisoba and other casual Japanese favorites. The prices range from $4 to 6 for steamed buns, onigiri (rice balls) and Japanese-style hot dogs to $12 to $15 for noodle dishes.

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8 October 2013

Nydalen Bryggeri & Spiseri, Oslo – Restaurant Review

Over the last year or so Oslo has seen some great new restaurant openings. Although there's still a long way to go before Oslo catches up with its Scandinavian neighbours, it's finally starting to feel like Oslo is getting a restaurant scene befitting its status as Norway's capital. One very recent addition to the city's dining scene is Nydalen Bryggeri & Spiseri that opened in Oslo's Nydalen neighbourhood in August 2013.

Running Nydalen Bryggeri are the team behind Oslo's Amundsen Brewery who have turned the site of a former Bølgen & Moi restaurant into a vast temple to zythology (yeah, I had to look that one up too), serving a wide variety of beers as well as robust fare for lunch and dinner, with many of the dishes made with their own beer.

The Real History of Houston’s Most Iconic Restaurant and How Cafe Annie and Robert Del Grande are Being Reborn

Robert Del Grande in the kitchen of the original Cafe Annie on Westheimer, 1984

Robert and Mimi Del Grande at the original Cafe Annie, 1984

Julia Child and Robert Del Grande, L.A., mid-1990s

Robert Del Grande, early ‘90s

The three amigos of Turner's and The Annie Café & Bar — Sam Governale, Chef Robert Del Grande, Ben Berg — celebrating at the opening. (Photo by Jacob Power)

Robert & Mimi Del Grande at the Da Camera Gala at The Houstonian. (Photo by Priscilla Dickson)

Crabmeat Tostados, The Annie Café & Bar (Photo by Kirsten Gilliam)

Rabbit Pot Pie, The Annie Café & Bar (Photo by Kirsten Gilliam)

Steak sandwich, The Annie Café & Bar (Photo by Kirsten Gilliam)

Turtle cheesecake, The Annie Café & Bar (Photo by Kirsten Gilliam)

I n 1981, Robert Del Grande arrived in Houston to visit his girlfriend, and a year later, he became one of four co-owners of Cafe Annie, the French bistro located in a modest strip center on Westheimer Road. Four iterations later — with name changes along the way — Del Grande is striking out of the original group and partnering with restaurateur Benjamin Berg to launch a rebrand, this time named The Annie Café & Bar.

It began when the scholarly Del Grande, a 26-year-old Ph.D. grad student studying biochemistry at the University of California, Riverside, met his future wife, the outgoing, fun-loving coed Mimi Kinsman, who was also a California native. Fast forward to Mimi’s college graduation, when she moved to Houston to work with her sister, newlywed Candice (or Candy, as she’s known) and her husband, Lonnie Schiller, a Texan who ran an advertising and marketing agency.

Candy and Lonnie had traveled to Europe during the late ’70s. Like so many during that era, they came home dreaming of opening a French bistro as charming as the ones where they had dined in Paris. And that’s exactly what they did.

The intimate bistro was dubbed Cafe Annie. Off for summer break, Del Grande came to Houston to spend time with Mimi. He was enthralled with cooking.

“I wanted to help out at the restaurant,” he says. “I was cooking at home from cookbooks but was curious what it was really like in a restaurant kitchen… My only hospitality experience was scooping ice cream at a Baskin-Robbins when I was 17.”

He read Jacques Pepin’s ground-breaking La Technique cover to cover and voraciously pored over Michelin-starred chefs’ cookbooks, from the Troisgros brothers to Michel Guérard, stars of the culinary scene who at the time were popularizing lighter, French-technique-driven nouvelle cuisine across the globe.

“In school, you spent half the day reading in the library, but to my surprise, the French chefs at Cafe Annie weren’t keeping up with what the chefs were doing in France,” he says.

After a short stay, Del Grande headed back to California to complete his Ph.D. Nine months later, when faced with the conundrum of what to do with the rest of his life, he contemplated moving to Switzerland or even Chicago to work on a postdoctoral degree, but his fiancée wanted to stay in Houston, so he returned to work behind the range at Cafe Annie.

“I was the cook with the book who encouraged them to push this and that,” he says. “I was used to working day and night in the lab anyway, but not everyone was. They relished a night off, but I wanted to be there.

“I think the chef really wasn’t cut out for the job, He loved windsurfing and other things more and eventually left. When he did, there was talk of what we should do. Should we hire another chef? And I said, ‘I have a lot to learn, but I can do this. I’ll make this happen.’ It was one of those sheer moments of opportunity.”

But jumping from the intricate, subtly flavored fare of France to what would become his trademark — the bold flavors of Texas and the Southwest — was a slow evolution.

“We all wanted to be French in the late ’70s and early ’80s,” he says. “The more difficult it was, the better, and the French were very good at making things difficult. If you wanted to be the best, you had to be French.

“Then three things converged. One was the principle of nouvelle cuisine that mandated you had to use the best, freshest ingredients. It was an early local thing. Next, there is no way we could be better than the French — according to the French. And, third, these were not dishes you made at home. The foods we really liked, that we ate in the back of the kitchen, were the origins of Southwest cuisine: the local, fresh stuff combined with some Mexican influences, all of which was the complete opposite of French cooking.”

Back then, in the early ’80s, Houston colleagues such as Amy Ferguson (Charlie’s 517) were meandering down the same path as Del Grande — ditto in Dallas, with chefs Stephan Pyles (Routh Street Cafe), Dean Fearing (The Mansion on Turtle Creek), and Avner Samuel (Loews Anatole Hotel). Circa 1984, cookbook writer and consultant Anne Lindsay Greer suggested several of them come together to put on a potluck dinner in Dallas and show the world that Texas has its own unique take on regional cooking. She convinced them that by working together, they could attract more attention than they could ever garner alone.

In a 2014 retrospective story, Texas Monthly food editor Patricia Sharpe wrote of the movement: “How can you pinpoint the beginning of something as sweeping as a culinary movement? You can’t … To appreciate the radical nature of that act, it helps to remember how stratified restaurants were then: there was fine dining, defined by French food and ‘continental’ cuisine, and there was everyday dining, and the two seldom overlapped.

“Yet at their very first dinner meeting, the Texans recognized one another as kindred spirits who believed that our state’s humble foods — enchiladas and salsas, smoked meats and fried chicken, okra pickles and chowchow, buttermilk biscuits and peach pies — were not just homey favorites. Treated with imagination and refinement, they could equal anything the Old World had to offer.”

Attract attention they did. Throughout the mid-’80s through the ’90s, the food world exhaustively covered the trend baptized Southwest cuisine. Every major publication, from Bon Appétit to Gourmet, as well as industry insiders such as Restaurant Hospitality, not only spread the word but anointed Del Grande, one of the movement’s founding chefs, with accolades ranging from the coveted James Beard Award to Best Restaurant honors in a 1999 issue of Food & Wine. Del Grande, along with now-wife Mimi, who ran the front of the house, and partners/in-laws Candy and Lonnie Schiller were running what was arguably the most famous restaurant in the city of Houston.

Robert and Mimi Del Grande at the original Cafe Annie, 1984

In 1989, nine years after Cafe Annie’s founding, the foursome decided to move from their 3,500-square-foot Westheimer address to the highly visible Galleria area. The new Post Oak location, near San Felipe, was nearly three times larger. With the help of partner/interior designer Candy Schiller, they upgraded everything from the stone floors to the rich mahogany book-matched veneer that cloaked the walls of the soaring, dramatic space. Cafe Annie was the reservation to get.

It was the see-and-be-seen-place where diners’ names were dropped in the gossip columns of the day and milestones happened, from signing a big oil deal to celebrating a wedding anniversary.

Boldfaced hometown names, from George H.W. Bush to astronaut Alan Shepard and ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, made the place their own. Even the most famous chef in France, Paul Bocuse, made a pilgrimage through Cafe Annie’s hallowed doors. Thankful that Del Grande served him anything but French fare, he delighted in the regional cuisine that had been elevated from humble to approachable haute.

Then there were the fabled New Year’s Eve parties, packed with women dancing on the bar. “In the ’90s, the economy was blowing along,” Del Grande says. “New Year’s Eve was an odd thing. It was like a badge of honor that you could survive it. We would do all this elaborate stuff. There were two seatings — the quiet 6 pm and, later, the wild second seating.”

As they rolled toward the year 2000, each party got crazier.

“I don’t remember how it started, but then there was a gong, Silly String, and you’d wake up the next day with glitter on your pillow,” says Del Grande, who would sit back and watch Mimi and company jump onto the bar, turn up the music, and dance like it was 1999, to quote the Prince song. And it was. After the eve of 1998, in the wake of Y2K, they closed out the last year of the millennium with no fanfare whatsoever.

Whether that moment was the harbinger of change, we’ll never know, but change was indeed afoot, with cell phones beginning to proliferate.

“I made this prediction in 1999,” Del Grande recalls. “I said, ‘Cell phones will change everything. If you change the way you communicate, you will change the way you socialize, and we’ll all change.’”

When they moved to the first Post Oak location, the restaurant was much bigger and more dramatic, but “the difference was that everything was concentrated in the dining room,” he says. “The bar was simply a place you waited for a table. But there was a certain group who would eat at the bar. It was like ‘If there is all this hoopla in the dining room, I’ll just sit in the bar.’

Then a light went off in my head. I thought: ‘What’s the difference between bar food and the food in the dining room? You can eat bar food with your fingers!’ We couldn’t put a burger on the main menu, but we could serve it at the bar. That was the difference.”

While people were still wearing coats and ties in the dining room, the bar was surreptitiously gaining a certain cachet.

In the years leading up to 2009, things changed in a bigger way: Their landlord had other plans for the space they occupied, near the intersection of San Felipe and Post Oak Boulevard. Over the years, commercial real estate developer Ed Wulfe had been acquiring land around the Post Oak area and envisioned something much bigger, much grander — a development he’d call BLVD Place. His idea was to move the restaurant a few yards up the street to occupy an expansive two-story space.

“I think the whole plan initially was that Cafe Annie was going to be the endcap of the new development, where there would be a hotel, shopping, etc. It was proposed as the place you needed to be, but instead, it turned into ‘What’s going on there? What’s with all that construction?’” Del Grande recalls. “I thought, ‘I don’t want to move. I want to wait until the development is more complete,’ because if they are going to build a hotel we could be a part of it, much the way Fearing’s is within The Ritz-Carlton Dallas.”

But the hotel never happened.

“The problem with the restaurant was that when we designed it, everything was in such a rush,” Del Grande says. “Before you knew it, they’re telling you the elevator’s in, and then you’re trying to figure out where the front door should be. We never had a chance to really think it all through.”

When the foursome had initially made the move from Westheimer to their first Post Oak space, the layout was almost identical, save for a quick flip of the blueprints.

“When we had to move again to the new Post Oak location, nothing was the same,” Del Grande says. “There was a lower ceiling, the space faced another direction, and there was no way we could take the former design and place it in the new one, nothing fit. Not to mention the problematic two-story, upstairs/downstairs situation with the kitchen and dining level on the top floor and the entry and restrooms on the first, which had customers complaining from the start.

“While we tried to soften things up with a different design the question eventually became: How can you call it the same name if it’s not going to even resemble the other in the least?”

Name Games

Thus, with the move, the iconic Cafe Annie name went by the wayside, replaced with RDG — the chef’s initials. Yet Bar Annie’s name stayed the same. The new place was now labeled RDG + Bar Annie. To confuse matters further, Del Grande recalls that diners would telephone the new location and ask, “Is this still Cafe Annie?”

Others would drive past its former stead, see a construction site, and wonder where it had gone, never realizing it was only a block away. And then there were the out-of-towners who had no idea what was going on.

But that was the least of their problems. “I thought we had a bad break with Mo’s restaurant across the street, too,” he says. “That rowdy group [complete with hookers] would cross the street, cocktails in hand, and jam up our bar. It was nuts. We had to have someone downstairs collecting their drinks. The restaurant was not set up for that, we never anticipated it… A lot of people got the wrong message in the beginning.”

And just about this time, younger diners were heading everywhere else, as a veritable boom of restaurants was hitting Houston. One could hardly begin a casual conversation without the phrase “Have you been to [name of latest restaurant] yet?” spilling from one’s lips.

A city that had always staunchly supported those who started their careers in town began to embrace outsiders, making competition for dining dollars fierce. Cafe Annie began losing pivotal, long-tenured front- and back-of-the-house employees, but Del Grande and company took each departure in stride.

As the 35th anniversary approached in June 2016, they contemplated ways to mark it. Nixing the idea of a big party, they decided instead to bring a few Cafe Annie signature menu items back to RDG. Then someone on the team (no one is sure just who) thought it would be a brilliant idea to change the name back to Cafe Annie, typography and all, which led to nothing but more confusion.

In 2017, in an outward sign of business slowing significantly, the Schiller Del Grande Restaurant Group (as they are collectively known) decided to refashion what was essentially a dead first-floor entry space into a small retro eatery, serving wood-grilled steaks and oysters. While the food was fabulous and up to the standards they’d set decades prior, the short-lived concept was far from the talk of the town.

A Cafe Annie Restart

Now 64 years old, Robert Del Grande is stepping up for his grand redux and stepping out on the stage solo. Mimi has retired, and the Schillers are busy consulting on hotel and restaurant projects elsewhere, although the foursome still retain operations at the downtown eatery The Grove at Discovery Green.

In a deal brokered by the site’s late developer Ed Wulfe, Del Grande has partnered with restaurateur Benjamin Berg and renewed the lease for another decade. Together they’re working to completely revamp what once was — concept, design and menu — to bring something exciting and altogether new to the fore.

The three muskateers of The Annie Café & Bar — Sam Governale, Chef Robert Del Grande, Ben Berg — celebrating at the soft opening. (Photo by Jacob Power)

Berg, a native New Yorker and alum of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, moved from Manhattan to Houston several years ago with his wife and three young children in search of a better quality of life. After a management stint at the Houston location of Smith & Wollensky, Berg has gone on to open his own popular steak place, B&B Butchers & Restaurant, in Houston, then Fort Worth.

Shortly after, two Houston locations of his more casual concept, B.B. Lemon, premiered. Almost simultaneously, he acquired the old Carmelo’s restaurant in west Houston, now rechristened B.B. Italia and B.B. Pizza. All in a span of four short years.

Berg admits to combing the massive archives of the New York Public Library’s old restaurant menu collection for fun.

“When I moved to Houston,” he says, “I learned about the history of the restaurants here. Everyone told me about Café Annie and Tony’s and Maxim’s.”

While aware of Del Grande’s legacy and influence, Berg initially hesitated when Wulfe approached him in April 2018 about getting involved.

“It was just bad timing,” he says. “I had just opened B&B Butcher’s in Fort Worth and had other stuff going on with the Italian restaurant, and I thought, ‘I don’t want to do another restaurant right now.’ ”

But a fortuitous meeting at Galatoire’s in New Orleans several months later brought Berg and Del Grande together, where both were dining separately. Berg says, “For me, this is a real people business, and I didn’t know Robert, but we started talking. When we got back to Houston, we got together and talked again — that’s what got me in. He’s a great guy. I wanted to work with him.

“To be able to work with some of the real pioneers of Houston food and be a part of a name that everybody knows is really exciting. It puts a ton of pressure on me … You will always have people who will say, ‘I liked things this way,’ but things have to change over time. I’m a big believer in that.”

What’s in store for diners now that the3 doors of The Annie Cafe & Bar are reopened?

“I think we’re going to blow people away with the interiors and the new look, creating a new atmosphere for the next 20 years of Annie,” says Berg. Initially what made Berg step away from the deal was the challenging second-floor space. But with the help of architect Issac Preminger, he says, they’ve figured that out.

One of the biggest customer requests — adding bathrooms to the second floor — was an easy fix. In addition, Berg says, “We’ve moved the stairs over, created a real entrance and an energy to the room.” The bright, clean space — with an oval two-sided bar that will seat up to 50, white-painted brick, hardwood floors, and palm trees — won’t resemble the old in the least.

Rabbit Pot Pie, The Annie Café & Bar (Photo by Kirsten Gilliam)

As for the fare, you’ll find a few classics on the tightly edited menu of Del Grande’s much-imitated creations, from coffee-crusted filet to the famous crab tostadas. To be sure, change is afoot.

“The restaurant became a celebration place, and I don’t think people thought it was approachable anymore,” Berg says. “The prices got up there, too… My idea is to have fun, get Robert excited again.

“If someone comes in and wants something from the old menu, that’s the hospitality part. You want it, we’ll make it.

“The new Annie Cafe & Bar will respect the fundamentals: Buy great ingredients then don’t ruin them. I don’t think food has to be crazy and wild. It has to be really good. I want to keep the essence of what made Annie great, improve on it, bring a new crowd to it, and show that this thing has legs. Oh, and to not screw up what Robert’s done for 38 years.”

New steakhouse restaurant to open in Solvang

Executive Chef Erik Dandee plates a butternut squash soup in the Sear Steakhouse kitchen. The restaurant’s dishes will include ingredients from two local farms, owned by restaurant owners Demetri and Karen Loizides.

A new farm-to-table restaurant will serve locally sourced ingredients and prime beef dishes to customers in the heart of Solvang.

Sear Steakhouse, located in downtown Solvang, is set to open March 3, complete with a full-service restaurant and bar.

The restaurant will source ingredients for its food and drink menus from the restaurant’s very own organic agricultural properties, Sear Farm and Roblar Farm in Solvang.

Both of these locations are minutes away from the restaurant’s location and produce more than a hundred varieties of vegetables, fruits and herbs. The restaurant will also source its beef from a Colorado farm, which will provide the restaurant with USDA Prime and Choice beef.

The Sear Steakhouse will serve up cuts of USDA Choice and Prime beef sourced from a cattle farm in Colorado. Executive Chef Erik Dandee will be at the helm of the Sear Steakhouse kitchen, overseeing operations and menu development.

Restaurant owners Demetri and Karen Loizides, the duo behind Solvang’s K’Syrah Catering & Events and the popular Maverick Saloon, decided to open Sear Steakhouse after their catering business was hit hard by the pandemic. Without large gatherings to cater, the owners decided to transform their catering space by doing a modern take on a classic steakhouse.

“Due to the events of this past year, our catering platform faced so many limitations,” Mr. Loizides said in a statement. “But we still had our farms, and we were still floating the idea of opening a restaurant in K’Syrah’s Solvang space. We just needed that final push, which we received in the form of two great additions to this business: Alberto (Battaglini) and Chef Erik (Dandee).”

Chef Dandee will sit at the helm of the kitchen staff as executive chef, overseeing all menu and recipe development. For a few weeks now, Chef Dandee and his staff have been experimenting with local produce in the kitchen, working to find the perfect blend of ingredients for mouth-watering dishes, like the beet-cured salmon or the bone-in pork chop with charred kale.

Chickens at Sear Farm will produce eggs for entrees at Sear Steakhouse, a farm-to-table restaurant that is set to open in Solvang the first week of March.

“I think our restaurant will stand out due to us knowing that we have a very good product to start with and matching that up with excellent service,” Chef Dandee told the News-Press Tuesday. “We’re really proud of what we’re doing, and we think this something that is going to be easily approachable by everyone.”

Mr. Battaglini, who is well-known on the South Coast for his mixed drink concoctions, will pull from the Steakhouse’s farms to curate cocktails for the restaurant’s menu. The restaurant plans to offer classic drinks such as a Hemingway or Pisco Sour, and a menu of farm-inspired cocktails created by Mr. Battaglini.

During its grand opening, the restaurant will seat guests on its front and back patios in compliance with current indoor dining restrictions. Once the restaurant can return to indoor dining, the steakhouse will be able to accommodate approximately 150 diners.

Restaurants reopening in the CBD

The Federal and State governments are charting the way out of the coronavirus crisis. Here's how restaurants in the Adelaide CBD will adapt to the easing restrictions.


The Good Lord Dr Nicola Spurrier is finally smiling upon us, as South Australia begins to wind back some of the restrictions placed on social gathering due to the COVID-19 crisis.

This story has been updated.

If you’d like to be listed, or you’d like to update your listing, email [email protected]

The news has moved very quickly, so here’s a recap.

At around 5pm on Friday, 22 May, Premier Steven Marshall announced a backflip on a previous decision and immediately allowed all venues of any licence category to trade with 10 patrons indoors, 10 patrons outdoors, and to serve alcohol alongside food, so long as each patron in either area is afforded 4sqm.

This article has been updated.

If you own a restaurant and would like to be listed, or you’d like to update your listing, email [email protected]

Monday, 25 May then brought the announcement that the stage 2 easing of restrictions would be brought forward to Monday, 1 June, as well as an expanded easing of restrictions than was initially planned.

From 1 June, venues can have up to 80 patrons at any one time, but that capacity must split between “discreet rooms or areas”, each up to a maximum of 20 patrons.

In effect, a pub with a separated front bar, dining room, and lounge could have 60 people spread throughout those three areas. However, each patron must still be afforded 4sqm.

Additionally, all licensed venues will, from 1 June, be permitted to serve alcohol without a meal, so long as patrons are seated. And to further belabour the very important point: through all of this, social distancing requirements of 4sqm per person still apply.

In short, my hungry and socially starved friends, this means we can right now head out to somewhere other than the kitchen for dinner and a shared bottle of wine – while also giving due respect to social distancing requirements – and from 1 June we can just head to the pub for a beer.

The eased restrictions are not workable for every business in the exact same way, so we reached out to a bunch of CBD restaurants to find out how they have adapted and are adapting.

Level 1, 125 Gilles Street

Tues—Sat: 6pm ’til late

Africola is currently offering a takeaway menu.

The restaurant will reassess its style of service as restrictions ease, but no changes are planned as yet.

Allegra Dining Room
Level 1, 125 Gilles Street

Fri—Sat: Dinner service

Allegra Dining Room is currently serving takeaway only, with pick up an delivery available.

From 1 June, Allegra will continue to offer takeaway, as well as dine-in service as per government advice: Maximum 20 patrons, each afforded 4sqm. It will also open from Thursday through Sunday.

29 Frome Street

Mon—Thu: 4:30pm ’til 8:30pm
Friday:11:30am ’til 8:30pm
Sat—Sun: 4:30pm ’til 8:30pm

Amalfi is currently open for takeaway and outdoor dining for up to 10 patrons.

From 22 May, Amalfi will reopen for indoor dining, allowing 10 patrons to also dine inside.

Bai Long Store
80 Hutt Street

Tue— Thu: 5pm ’til 8:30pm
Fri—Sun: 12pm ’til 2pm, 5pm ’til 8:30pm

Bai Long Store is currently open for takeaway and outdoor dining up to 10 people.

From 1 June, the restaurant and pantry will open for indoor dining, up to a maximum of 20 patrons.

Cheekies Hot Chicken
260—262 Rundle Street

Wed—Thu: 12pm ’til 2:30pm, 5pm ’til 9pm
Fri—Sat: 12pm ’til 2:30pm, 5pm ’til 9pm (dine-in available at BRKLYN)
Sunday: 12pm ’til 2:30pm, 5pm ’til 9pm

Cheekies Hot Chicken is available primarily for takeaway via Uber Eats and Bopple, however on Friday and Saturday nights patrons can dine in at BRKLYN from 5pm ’til 11pm.

From 5 June, bookings will still be preferred, but not essential.

Contemporary Japanese Deli
Shop 22, 68 Grenfell Street

Mon—Fri: 12pm ’til 2pm

Contemporary Japanese Deli is currently open for takeaway only, with a shortened menu of bento and curry.

From 1 June, the eatery will extend its hours to 11am ’til 3pm Monday to Friday.

East End Cellars & The Tasting Room
25 Vardon Avenue

Mon—Tue: 9am ’til 5pm (lunch service 11am—3pm, all day menu 3pm—5pm)
Wed—Thu: 9am ’til 9:15pm (lunch service 11am—3pm, all day menu 3pm—5pm, dinner service 5pm—8:30pm)
Fri—Sat: 9am ’til late (lunch service 11am—3pm, all day menu 3pm—5pm, dinner service 5pm—8:30pm, all day menu 9pm—9:30pm)
Sunday: 12pm ’til 6pm (lunch service 12pm ’til 4pm)

East End Cellars and The Tasting Room are currently offering indoor and outdoor dining, with both spaces each capped at 10 patrons maximum.

Bookings are highly recommended for all food service sittings, and are available as follows, as the venue is introducing staggered sittings to ensure they comply with social distancing requirements.

“In a nutshell if you are dining inside, minimum spend is $150 per person (includes $75 three course set menu), for dinner only, with two hours per sitting,” co-owner Michael Andrewartha says.

“If you are sitting outside for dinner or for lunch in either section, there is no minimum spend for a two hour sitting.”

125 Gilles Street

Wed—Sun: Open from 5pm

Etica is currently offering takeaway and outdoor dining for up to 10 people. The restaurant will open for dine-in from 1 June, in accordance with government advice: Maximum 20 people, each person afforded 4sqm.

Fino Vino
82 Flinders Street

Fino Vino is currently only open for takeaway.

From 10 June, as restrictions are eased, Fino Vino’s hours of operations will change to dinner service Wednesday through Saturday and lunch service Thursday and Friday. Services will be staggered over two sittings.

Fino’s director, Sharon Romeo, says you can “Expect to see David Swain at the helm and myself hosting with refined rustic dishes.”

Gaja by Sashi
4/86 Pirie Street

Monday: 11am ’til 3pm
Tue—Fri: 11am ’til 3pm, 5pm ’til 8pm
Saturday: 5pm ’til 8pm

Gaja is offering takeaway and outdoor dining for its lunch service, and delivery for its dinner service up to 5km from the city. Preorders for delivery are required one day in advance.

From 1 June, Gaja will offer indoor dining for up to 20 patrons, with 4sqm afforded for every person, as per government advice.

Golden Boy
309 North Terrace

Golden Boy is currently open for takeaway, offering both pick up and delivery by the Golden Boy team.

The restaurant has not yet decided if it will open for indoor dining in line with the stage 2 easing of restrictions set for 1 June. For the time being, it will stick with the takeaway model.

The Golden Wattle
110 Pirie Street

The Golden Wattle is currently closed.

The pub has not yet decided on a reopen date.

“The Golden Wattle won’t be operating till at least we can serve alcohol and 20 people is not going to pay our bills,” co-owner Damien Kelly says.

72—74 Halifax Street

Thu—Fri: Dinner service

Herringbone is currently offering takeaway for pick up on Thursday and Friday nights.

From 1 June, the restaurant will reopen for indoor dining, up to 20 patrons at a time. Herringbone will open for two sittings during dinner service from Wednesday through Sunday, 6pm ’til 8pm, as well as one extra sitting for lunch service on Fridays, 12pm ’til 3pm (before reopening at 6pm).

Hey Jupiter
11 Ebenezer Place

Mon—Thu: 7am ’til 4pm
Fri—Sat: 7am ’til 10pm
Sunday: 7am ’til 4pm

Hey Jupiter is currently offering dine-in for a maximum of 10 patrons indoors and 10 patrons outdoors at any one time.

From Monday, 1 June, this capacity will be revised up to 10 people indoors and 20 people outdoors.

Hut & Soul
310 Pulteney Street

Monday: 5pm ’til 9:30pm
Wed—Sat: 5pm ’til 9:30pm
Sunday: 12pm ’til 2:30pm, 5pm ’til 9:30pm

Hut & Soul is currently open for takeaway and outdoor dining for up to 10 people.

The restaurant is offering its full menu, including Malaysian street food options that would normally only available during lunch hours.

From Friday 22 May, the restaurant will reopen for indoor dining, up to maximum 10 customers indoor and 10 outdoors.

Jack & Jill’s Bar & Restaurant
121 Pirie Street

Thursday: 12pm ’til 2pm
Friday: 12pm ’til 2pm, 5pm ’til 9pm
Saturday: 5pm ’til 9pm

Jack & Jill’s is currently open for takeaway and outdoor dining for up to 10 people.

Beginning on 10 June, the restaurant will open up for indoor dining, up to a maximum of 20 people, with the following week seeing expanded trading hours: Monday to Friday lunch and dinner service, and Saturday dinner service only.

“Funnily enough, today I received a phone call for a 20pax dinner on June 14th,” owner Tom McLean says.

“I’m really looking forward to pulling through the next few months and coming out stronger.”

19 Gilles Street

Lalala closed on 30 March and has opted not to open for takeaway or outdoor dining.

From 5 June, Lalala will offer indoor dining to a maximum of 20 patrons at any one time. The restaurant will offer lunch from Monday to Friday and dinner from Tuesday to Saturday.

Little Ban Ban
Level 1 Rundle Mall Plaza, 65 Rundle Mall

Little Ban Ban will likely remain closed until stage 3 of eased restrictions, slated for July but subject to the wiles of the coronavirus.

Midnight Spaghetti
196 Grenfell Street

Midnight Spaghetti is currently closed, but the team is reassess the situation weekly and as reopening stages progress.

The restaurant is currently assessing if the stage 2 easing of restrictions, kicking in on 5 June, will “allow it to be viable [to operate] with full table service offered,” says group operations manager Patrick Allan.

Mum Cha
279 Rundle Street

Wed—Sat: 5:30pm ’til late
Sunday: 12pm ’til 3pm

Mum Cha is currently open for takeaway. Menus are posted on the restaurant’s social media accounts.

The restaurant is also launching a yum cha service in Franks Lane outside Mother Vine on Fridays and Saturdays. Bookings are essential, and there will be a maximum of 10 patrons at any one time.

Mum Cha will revise its operating hours and capacity from Monday, 1 June.

Naancho Naancho Man
3/210 Hutt Street

Naancho Naancho Man is closed and currently undergoing renovations. It is set to reopen on 27 May.

When stage 2 easing of restrictions kick in on Friday 5 June, Naancho Naancho Man will trade seven days a week from 12pm ’til 8pm.

28 Vardon Avenue

Thu—Sun: 5pm ’til 10pm

From Wednesday, 3 June, NOLA will offer indoor seating up to 20 patrons. The venue will be offering table service and bookings are essential.

“To ensure we are still a vibe- and service-rich venue we have opted to shift towards a table service model. This will allow us to control the flow of people, ensuring social distancing is adhered to, while giving the service and experience we want. Think New Orleans speakeasy cocktail bar,” says founder Ollie Brown.

“You will be met at the front door and given a hot toddy (on the house) while you wait for your table. You will then be walked through the dimly lit and candled venue and seated at your table. We will have a range of warm and warming cocktails as well as food.

“Coming to NOLA is about the experience and we will be focusing on this more than ever for our table service format.”

The new trading hours will be Tue—Thu: 5pm ’til 11pm and Fri—Sat: 12pm ’til 2pm. Sunday trading will be considered after the stage 3 easing of restrictions, scheduled (but not guaranteed) for July.

Osteria Oggi
76 Pirie Street

Mon—Sun: 11:30am ’til late

Oggi is currently open for all day dining, offering indoor and outdoor dining for up to 10 patrons in each space.

Once restrictions ease further on 1 June, the restaurant will expand its indoor dining to 10 patrons in the cellar, 15 in the front bar area, 20 in the atrium, and 8 seated outside.

Booking ahead of time is essential, and bookings of four people or more will require a deposit.

Lunchtime sittings will be a one-hour booking, whereas dinner sittings will be 1.5 hours.

Dinner bookings of four patrons or more and all dinner bookings after 8:30pm will be “required to do tasting menu for dinner sittings.”

Part Time Lover
Pilgrim Lane

Fri—Sat: Takeaway dinner service

Part Time Lover is currently offering its takeaway, heat and eat at home dinner packs on Friday and Saturday night.

From 5 June, the restaurant will open its doors and allow up to 20 patrons to dine inside at any one time. It has not yet settled on what its trading hours will be.

3/25 Grenfell Street

Wed—Thu: 5pm ’til 9pm
Fri—Sat: 5pm ’til late
Sun: 5pm ’til 9pm

Pocha is currently open for dine-in, with a maximum of 10 patrons seated indoors and 10 seated outdoors. Bookings are essential.

From 5 June, the restaurant will expand its indoor seating to a maximum of 20 people. Bookings will still be essential.

Ragi’s Spicery
1/210 Hutt Street

Ragi’s Spicery is currently offering indoor seating for 10 patrons and outdoor seating for 10 patrons.

The restaurant will amend its operating hours in line with the stage 2 easing of restrictions, scheduled for Monday, 1 June, and its capacity will increase to 32 people across four rooms.

Ragi’s restaurant will trade 12pm ’til 8:30pm Monday through Friday, and 5pm ’til 9pm on Saturdays and Sundays. No more than 20 patrons will be permitted to dine in at any one time, and each person must be afforded 4sqm.

188 Grenfell Street

Roxie’s is currently closed, but the team expects to reopen the Roxie’s Deli from Monday, 1 June, offering both breakfast and lunch for takeaway and dine in, in line with government advice. On 1 June, only 10 people will be allowed to dine outdoors, and from 5 June, 20 people will be allowed to dine indoors.

The café, bar and restaurant is also looking to introduce some pantry items to the Deli, including Midnight Spaghetti pasta sauce and pickled vegetables.

Beyond the stage 2 easing of restrictions, “Breakfast and brunch bookings will be closely monitored and capped to allow appropriate spacing of tables etc within our current footprint,” says group operations manager Patrick Allan.

Staazi & Co
224 Grenfell Street

Wed—Sat: 12pm ’til 8pm

Staazi & Co is currently open for takeaway, for pick up and delivery via Uber Eats, and up to 10 patrons can sit outside at a time, provided they are properly distanced (one person per 4sqm).

There are no plans for Staazi to change its style of service from 5 June, except that “as things progress, we won’t be accepting phone orders anymore. Just walk-ins Uber and online.”

The Stag Public House
299 Rundle Street

Wed—Sun: 12pm ’til 10pm

From Wednesday, 3 June, The Stag will reopen for indoor dining and drinking. Table service will be provided, and bookings are essential.

The pub will trade from Wednesday through to Sunday from 12pm ’til 10pm. These trading hours will be amended once again once the stage 3 easing of restrictions are implemented, due to happen (though not guaranteed) in July.

Yiasou George
26 East Terrace

Yiasou George will reopen on Thursday, 4 June.

The restaurant will seat a maximum of 20 patrons indoors and 20 outdoors. Table service will be provided to ensure the venue complies with social distancing requirements and bookings are essential.

Yiasou will trade Thursday through Sunday from 6pm ’til 10pm.

The restaurant will launch with a new winter menu, and keep an eye out for an upcoming winter dinner party series.

When the stage 3 easing of restrictions kick in (scheduled but not guaranteed to happen in July), the restaurant will reassess its operating hours.

3rd by NNQ
1 King William Street

Mon—Fri: 11am ’til 2:30pm

3rd by NNQ is currently offering takeaway and outdoor seating. Takeaway is available for pickup or delivery via Uber Eats.

The restaurant does not plan to expand its offering following stage 2 restrictions, but will consider opening for indoor dining following the stage 3 easing of restrictions. Stage 3 is scheduled for July, but is subject to the wiles of the coronavirus.

36 Blyth Street

Thu—Sun: 5:30pm ’til 9pm

8020BK is currently offering indoor dining for up to 10 patrons, as per government advice, as well as continuing pick up takeaway service and delivery through Uber Eats.

From 25 May, 8020BK will expand to operate Monday 5:30pm ’til 9pm, Tuesday through Friday 12pm ’til 2:30pm and 5:30pm ’til 9pm, and Saturday to Sunday 5:30pm ’til 9pm.

From 5 June, 8020BK will expand its indoor dining up to a maximum of 20 people with each patron afforded 4sqm as per government advice, whilst also continuing to offer takeaway via Uber Eats. Booking ahead is encouraged.

118 Hindley Street

Apoteca is currently open for takeaway, offering pre-order weekly meal packs which will be delivered on Fridays or Saturdays.

From Friday, 29 May, Apoteca will reopen, operating from Tuesday through Saturday, with two sitting times: the first runs either from 5:30pm ’til 7pm or 6pm ’til 7:30pm, and the second sitting runs from either 7:30pm or 8pm with no restrictions on sitting time.

There is no minimum spend required, but Apoteca will require a $20 deposit per person for every booking.

Ban Ban
145 Franklin Street

Mon—Thu: 5pm ’til 8:30pm
Fri—Sat: 5pm ’til 9:30pm
Sunday: 5pm ’til 8:30pm

Ban Ban is currently available for dine-in, up to a maximum of 10 patrons at a time.

From 5 June, Ban Ban will allow indoor dining, limited to 20 patrons, but will likely trade shorter than usual. The restaurant strongly encourages booking ahead of time.

Bread & Bone
15 Peel Street

Mon—Fri: 11:30am ’til 2pm, 5pm onwards
Sat—Sun: 5pm onwards

Bread & Bone is currently open for dine-in and takeaway, up to a maximum of 10 patrons for indoor dining.

The restaurant’s capacity will be revised from Monday, 1 June to 20 people inside the restaurant and 20 inside the tunnel.

Bookings and walk-ins are welcome, where capacity allows.

Coal Cellar + Grill
233 Victoria Square

The entire Hilton Adelaide, including Coal, closed on Friday, 3 April and is currently scheduled to reopen in July 2020. Hilton Adelaide’s commercial director, Hayley Kimber, says the reopen date may change depending on when South Australia’s border restrictions ease.

The Donburi House
52 Sturt Street

Tues—Sun: 11:30am ’til 2:30pm, 5pm ’til 10pm

The Donburi House is currently open for indoor dining for a maximum of 10 patrons at any one time. Dinner service will consist of three 1.5-hour sittings each night: 5pm, 6:30pm and 8pm.

From 1 June, the restaurant will scale back up to its full capacity, while adhering to the 4sqm distancing requirements.

Georges on Waymouth
20 Waymouth Street

Thursday: 5pm ’til 8:30pm
Friday: 12pm ’til 2pm, 5pm ’til 8:30pm
Saturday: 5pm ’til 8:30pm

Georges is currently open for takeaway.

From Wednesday, 3 June, Georges will open for dine-in trade, offering lunch service Wednesday to Friday and dinner service from Wednesday to Saturday.

The restaurant will consider extending its hours of operation in response to demand.

Georges has four separate dining areas, potentially making space available for 80 patrons at one time, but CityMag is still waiting on confirmation of exact numbers when considering the application of the one person per 4sqm rule.

Lunch bookings are available from midday and dinner bookings are available for sittings at 5:30pm, 6:15pm, 7:45pm and 8:30pm. Each booking will be allotted two hours.

“The love of service to our guests and the quality of product that we serve will continue, which Georges on Waymouth has been renowned for but we will offer a simpler, relaxed style of service taking into consideration hygiene and service procedures under the new normal,” says owner George Kasimatis.

The Georges takeaway offering will also remain in place.

Gilbert Street Hotel
88 Gilbert Street

Wed—Sun: 11am ’til 8pm

The Gilbert Street Hotel is currently open for takeaway food and booze.

As restrictions ease, the pub will consider reopening for indoor dining, but nothing is locked in as yet. They will also look to open seven days, with restricted hours.

12 Eliza Street

The restaurant is looking to reopen in line with the stage 2 easing of restrictions, which will kick in on 5 June. Government advice dictates that only 20 people will be allowed to dine indoors at any one time, and each patron must be afforded 4sqm.

Gondola Gondola
1 Peel Street

Fri—Sat: 4:30pm ’til 8:30pm

Gondola Gondola is currently only open for takeaway, offering both pick up and delivery.

“We will stick to takeaway only until we allow to have people sitting inside to dine with us,” owner Annie Liang says.

“I heard about June 8th, if so we will also reopen with a brand new menu! Hours of trading will be back to what it was before the lockdown.”

Honki Tonki Hindley Street
38 Hindley Street

Mon—Fri: 11:30am ’til 3pm, 5pm ’til 10pm
Sat—Sun: 5pm ’til 10pm

Honki Tonki on Hindley Street is currently open for takeaway.

Honki Tonki UniSA City West
University of South Australia City West Campus, Hindley Street

Honki Tonki’s UniSA City West sit is currently closed and will remain closed until further notice.

Hotel Metro
46 Grote Street

The Hotel Metro is currently closed, and undergoing significant renovations.

The pub is likely to reopen in August.

La Boca Bar and Grill
150 North Terrace

La Boca is currently closed, but there are plans for the restaurant to reopen soon.

Leigh Street Wine Room
9 Leigh Street

Leigh Street Wine Room is currently closed, however the restaurant’s sister bottle shop Juice Traders is operating.

From 10 June, Leigh Street Wine Room will reopen, trading from 3pm til late Wednesday to Sunday.

“We will work towards offering the same fun, easy-going, relaxed service, however, putting in place a little more space between tables to ensure social distancing is being adhered to,” owner Sali Sasi says.

“We’re in full support of a cautious roll out of stages. As much as we are cracking to get our doors open, our intention is to reopen and reopen once with the hope cases within South Australia continue to be under control.

“The last thing any of us want is to potentially be forced into yet another shut down because the roll out wasn’t done so pragmatically.”

Little NNQ
125 Gouger Street

Monday: 5pm ’til 8:30pm
Wed—Sun: 5pm ’til 8:30pm

Little NNQ is open for takeaway, both pick up and delivery (using their own drivers rather than a third-party platform). They are also offering outdoor dining for up to 10 people.

There are no plans for the restaurant to reopen indoor dining on 5 June. They will consider indoor dining once the stage 3 easing of restrictions are implemented.

57 Gilbert Street

Madre is currently only offering takeaway, available to be ordered for pickup or delivery through its website.

Madre founder Tim Anderson says the restaurant is not yet decided on whether it will trade following eased restrictions on 5 June.

“We are considering opening for the 20pax capacity for table service dining, and still running our pickup/delivery service along side of this. Still very hard to trade under these conditions though,” he says.

“Still considering all options though!”

Melt CBD
38 Waymouth Street

Tue—Sat: 11amm ’til late

Melt is currently open for dine-in, up to 10 patrons indoors and 10 outdoors (weather permitting). The restaurant’s capacity will be revised from Monday, 1 June to allow indoors 20 patrons upstairs and 20 patrons downstairs.

All sittings are 1.5 hours.

50 Sturt Street

Wed—Fri: 10:30am ’til 2pm, 5pm ’til 8pm
Saturday: 5pm ’til 8pm

MiMi is currently open for takeaway and offers outdoor dining for up to 10 patrons.

From 5 June, the restaurant will open up for indoor dining, with a limit of 20 people at any one time.

The Pancake Kitchen
13 Gilbert Place

The Pancake Kitchen is currently closed.

The restaurant plans to reopen sometime in July, after the stage 3 easing of restrictions.

Peel St Restaurant
9 Peel Street

Fri—Sat: Dinner service

Peel St Restaurant is currently open for takeaway on Friday and Saturday evenings, offering four or five of its most popular dishes. The takeaway offering is pick up only.

The restaurant also now offers outdoor dining, where up to 10 people at any one time can eat their takeaway meals during dinner service.

From 5 June, Peel St will allow indoor dining, but will likely trade fewer hours than usual. Details on exact hours are yet to be set.

40 Waymouth Street

Wed—Thu: 5pm ’til late
Friday:11:30am ’til late
Sat: 5pm ’til late

From Thursday, 28 May, Press* is open for dine in, up to 10 patrons indoors. The restaurant will revise its capacity from Monday, 1 June to allow 20 patrons indoors downstairs, 20 patrons indoors upstairs, and 8 patrons outdoors.

Each sitting is for 1.5 hours. A credit card number will be taken at booking and a cancellation within 24 hours of the booking will incur a charge.

All bookings from 7pm will be required to do a tasting menu.

Real Falafel
Stall 2/3 Adelaide Central Market

Mon—Sat: 10am ’til 4pm

Real Falafel is currently only offering takeaway, with a limited menu.

From 5 June, Real Falafel will bring its full menu back and allow dine-in patrons while adhering to government advice: maximum 20 people with each patron afforded 4sqm.

Red October
22 Gilbert Place

Tue—Sat: 5pm ’til midnight

Red October is currently offering seated dining for 10 patrons indoors and 10 patrons outdoors.

From 2 June, the bar and restaurant will increase its indoor capacity to 20 patrons.

Red October will continue to offer takeaway during this time, including its cook-at-home packs of borsch, khachapuri and dumplings.

17 Leigh Street

Wednesday: Dinner service
Thu—Fri: Lunch service at Sho, dinner service
Sat: Dinner service

Shōbōsho is open for dine-in, up to 10 patrons indoors and 10 patrons outdoors.

Bookings are essential. Bookings at Sho (the restaurants in-house little sister), and all bookings of four people or more will receive a set menu.

Thursday lunch service is a ramen menu.

From Monday, 1 June, the restaurant will revise its capacity to up to 20 people inside the restaurant, up to 10 people at Sho, and 10 people outside.

Sit Lo
30 Bank Street

Mon—Sat: 11am ’til 9pm

Sit Lo is currently only offering takeaway, but there are six seats available out the front. All orders will be served in takeaway containers.

From Friday, 22 May, Sit Lo will transition to seating 10 people outdoors and 10 indoors.

Then from Monday, 5 June, the restaurant will seat 20 people indoors. Government advice dictates that though 20 people can be seated indoors at any one time, all patrons must be afforded 4sqm.

Sparkke at the Whitmore
317 Morphett Street

Wed—Sat: 12pm ’til 9pm
Sunday: 12am ’til 5pm

From Friday, 29 May, Sparkke at the Whitmore is open dine-in. The pub’s in-house restaurant Fare can sit 10 people at any one time. Bookings are essential.

From Monday, 1 June, Fare’s capacity at each sitting will increase to 15. The pub’s capacity will also increase.

188 Hindley Street

Mon—Sun: 11:30am ’til 9pm

Stem Bar and Restaurant is currently offering takeaway for pick up and delivery.

From Tuesday, 9 June, the venue will once again offer indoor dining, up to 20 patrons at a time. Stem will also reconsider its operating hours, but nothing has been decided yet.

“Our chefs are currently working on a new menu including some old favourites, with some new and exciting dishes to suit lunch and dinner. A new menu format, with rotating dishes giving guests something new when they dine,” says venue manager Jo Phillis.

“We also are planning regular wine events scheduled for the upcoming months, showcasing big hitters and small producers influenced by the kitchen.”

Strathmore Hotel
129 North Terrace

Mon—Sun: 12pm ’til 10pm

From Wednesday, 27 May, the Strathmore will open its café concept, Café One 2 Nine, offering all day dining from noon onwards.

From 5 June, the pub will reopen for lunch service Monday to Friday and dinner service Monday to Saturday, while following government guidelines of no more than 20 people indoors at any one time and with each person afforded 4sqm. The restaurant will offer two dining session times per evening, and for the time being there will be no share meals on offer.

Sunny’s Pizza
17 Solomon Street

Mon—Sun: 5pm ’til 11pm

From Friday, 29 May, Sunny’s is open for dine-in, up to a maximum of 10 patrons indoors and 5 patrons outdoors. This will be revised up to 20 patrons indoors from Monday, 1 June.

The restaurant and bar will offer three sittings, to ensure they comply with social distancing requirements: 5:30pm, 7pm, 8:30pm.

11—13 Leigh Street

Udaberri is currently closed.

The bar and restaurant will reopen on 29 May, allowing indoor seating for up to 10 people, and outdoor seating for up to 10 people. However, there will be no bar seating available until restrictions are eased further.

Lucky they recently installed those plush booths, eh?

Udaberri will operate from 4pm ’til late Monday to Friday and 6pm ’til late Saturday and Sunday.

4a/8 Waymouth Street

Mon—Fri: 11am ’til 3pm

Uncle is currently open for takeaway, and there are some seats outside for takeaway patrons – maximum four people.

From 5 June, the restaurant will not change its service, except that customers will be able to order from inside the restaurant. The space is too small to accomodate dine-in service under the stage 2 easing of restrictions.

West Oak Hotel
208 Hindley Street

Mon—Wed: 12pm ’til late
Thu—Fri: 12pm ’til late
Sat—Sun: 4pm ’til late

From Friday, 29 May, West Oak will offer seating for 10 patrons indoors and 10 patrons outdoors.

The capacity will then increase from Monday, 1 June.

Sunday trade will be reserved for bookings of between 15 people (minimum) to 20 people (maximum). The charge will be $50 per head, $10 per Aperol spritz, and all other drinks plus food is included.

Wing It
89 King William Street

Mon—Sun: 12pm ’til 9pm

Wing it is only serving takeaway at the moment, and is cooking from within its sister North Adelaide restaurant, Piccoli Piatti. Takeaway is available for pick up or delivery.

Neither outdoor dining nor indoor dining up to 20 patrons at a time is enough to justify opening Wing It’s doors, so the bar and restaurant will remain closed to the public for the foreseeable future.

“Also having 0 sport on at the moment doesnt look good for a sports bar unfortunately,” owner Tom Smith says.

Closed for good

Not all of the Adelaide CBD’s venues have made it through to the other side of the coronavirus crisis. These are the restaurants that have shut for good.

Contemporary Japanese Deli II
Market Plaza Food Court

A new, old restaurant trend: eating with your hands

2 of 6 Allie Sieben, left, eats the fried fennel and onion petals appetizer with her sister Taylor Sieben at the Dock restaurant in Oakland, CA, Tuesday June 10, 2014. Michael Short/The Chronicle Show More Show Less

4 of 6 Owner and head chef James Syhabout plates food in the kitchen at the Dock restaurant in Oakland. Michael Short/The Chronicle Show More Show Less

5 of 6 The curry chicken thigh with roti and lime pickle at the Dock restaurant in Oakland. Michael Short/The Chronicle Show More Show Less

James Syhabout is clenching his left fist repeatedly, gently squeezing a wad of sticky rice.

"This is how you eat," he begins, his hand still casually pulsating.

We're sitting in East Oakland's Vientian Cafe on a sultry, sweaty night. The Laotian/Thai restaurant is seemingly plopped down in a residential area.

With his right hand, Syhabout plucks a clump of rice off the top and, using the sticky rice almost like a tortilla chip, deftly scoops up a handful of fiery kaeng nor mai (bamboo stew salad) and casually puts it in his mouth.

Syhabout is the chef-owner behind a handful of Oakland restaurants on various levels: a fine dining destination (Commis), a gastropub (Box & Bells), an Asian street food joint (Hawker Fare), and his latest addition, the Dock at Linden Street.

He's also on a mission to spread the gospel of eating with your hands.

Family style

"Growing up, how we ate as a family was very communal," he says. His family shared a basket of sticky rice in the middle of a table. Fish and meat were served on the bone. The utensil was a piece of food, be it sticky rice or lettuce cups.

Recently, Syhabout changed the dinner format at Hawker Fare, eliminating rice bowls in favor of shared plates for communal eating, many of which can be eaten by hand: crisp tamarind caramel ribs on the bone laab nuea diep, beef tartare and tripe to be stuffed into mint-studded lettuce leaves and nam prik noom, a charred shallot and green chile dip eaten with sticky rice.

The menu at Dock, his new restaurant and bar in the Linden Street Brewery, offers many beer-friendly dishes designed to be enjoyed without a fork: curry chicken thighs with roti fried fennel and onion petals scallions with romesco linguica corn dogs.

"I want to encourage people to experiment. It's not a right or wrong thing to eat with your hands, but for me, eating with your hands is more satisfying. There's more of a connection with the food."

Although Syhabout offers utensils at both restaurants, "Eating with your hands is something our ancestors did," he says, "no matter where you're from."

Indeed, from pizza to tacos, nearly every culture can lay a claim to eating with hands. And in the Bay Area, many embrace it.

Caterer and Indian cooking teacher Nalini Mehta, who also teaches Ayurveda, points out how the traditional Hindu healing practice links food with holistic well-being.

"Part of Ayurveda talks about what makes food connect," Mehta says. "Eating with your hands is very much of that element.

"When I eat with my hands, I think everyone at the table feels more comfortable. There's a camaraderie."

Closer to the food

There's also a physical impact, she says. Gripping food with fingers allows eaters to sense the food before it goes into the mouth. You can feel the temperature, the texture.

"Using foreign utensils, you have no sensation," Mehta says. "The sensations of different textures have a strong connection from the minute you touch."

Eating with hands is a ritual throughout India. In the south, handfuls of rice are skillfully "flung" into mouths, and dosas are eaten like burritos to eat a crepe-like dosa with a fork and knife is sacrilege, Mehta insists. In northern India, breads are used as the vessels.

Using both hands is frowned upon, says Mehta, citing cleanliness and etiquette concerns. One hand is personal the other is communal.

Azalina Eusope, a Malaysian street food vendor in San Francisco, says that nearly everything - even thick soups - is eaten by hand in her Mamak culture. The right hand, that is.

"You can only use the right hand to eat the left hand is the evil hand. You don't want to be evil," she says, matter-of-factly.

To scoop food with her hand, she forms a cup with her fingers, connecting her thumb to the next three fingers. All fingers are used to mop up the final bits.

Remarks Azalina's manager, Jim Benson: "When Malaysian people do it, they don't make a mess, not even any rice bits."

Catching on

In Ethiopian and Eritrean culture, every meal centers around injera, a fermented, sponge-like flatbread. It's traditional to use just the right hand, and a maximum of three cupping fingers, says Matheos Yohannes, who has operated San Francisco's Assab Eritrean Restaurant for the past two decades. It's important to dip into the stews with the bubbly side of the bread down so that it soaks up the sauce.

Yohannes says San Francisco diners are enthusiastic when it comes to eating with their hands as a way to experience the culture.

"Most of the time, even when we offer forks and spoons, they don't accept," he says. "They want to eat the traditional way. They like to do it the way we do."

'Like eating at home'

El Mansour opened in San Francisco's Richmond District 38 years ago, serving up a menu of Moroccan classics to be eaten by hand. Today, owner Jack Tanverakul says only 10 to 15 percent of his diners request silverware. The rest are happy to dive in and pick apart a lamb shank doused in honey and almonds.

"Sometimes I'm making jokes with customers, saying it's just like eating at home," Tanverakul says. Waiters pour rose water over diners' hands to start and end the meal, often to oohs and aahs.

Which leads to another reason for eating with your hands: It's fun. Which is why some of the Bay Area's four-star restaurants have adopted hands-on courses during their tasting menus.

At Saison, where a tasting menu starts at $248, chef Joshua Skenes has been known to offer a pristine, sculpture-like salad of tiny greens and flowers, meant to be hand-plucked from their bowl. A meal at Coi often begins with chef Daniel Patterson's take on chips and dip, in a snack form of puffed brown rice crackers it's a way to welcome diners into the restaurant, to help them relax, he says.

Christopher Kostow of the Restaurant at Meadowood sings a similar tune. His tasting menu starts with a quick succession of utensil-free canapes, then he sprinkles "hand bites" throughout the rest of the meal, often as a tie-in to the previous course.

"It takes away some of the pretension," he says.

'Normal and natural'

Kostow likes the bites so much that he now offers them in the restaurant's adjacent bar/lounge. All are designed to be eaten by hand. The price starts at $20 for a series of items like black olive meringues, Champagne-fermented vegetables and geoduck clam fritters.

"I would eat everything with my hands if I could. There's something normal and natural about it," Kostow says.

Back at Vientian Cafe, the room is abuzz with a wide variety of diners. A group of high school kids occupies a nearby table, pawing into baskets of sticky rice. A family sits at another table, kids gnawing on chicken wings. An older couple behind them devours egg rolls. At some point Jeff Mason, the sandwich maestro from Pal's Takeaway in the Mission, saunters in for a takeout order.

Syhabout pops his head up between bites of Lao-style papaya salad.

"You should write about how people really eat," he says. "This is real."

The Dock Chicken Curry

Serves 6 to 8

Chronicle staff writer Lynne Char Bennett adapted this recipe from James Syhabout, chef/owner of The Dock at Linden Street in Oakland. Syhabout serves the curry with house-made roti. At the restaurant, Syhabout recommends tearing or cutting the chicken into chunks, and then creating wraps or "tacos."

  • 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons Madras curry, about 1/3 ounce
  • 3/4 cup chopped yellow onions, about 3 ounces
  • 2 tablespoons chopped shallots, about 3/4 ounce
  • 3 to 4 large cloves garlic, peeled
  • 3 half-dollar-size coins ginger, each about 1/4-inch thick
  • 10 to 12 dried chile de arbols, stems removed
  • 1/4 cup + 1-3 tablespoons canola oil, as needed
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 teaspoons tomato paste
  • -- Kosher salt, to taste
  • 2 to 2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/2 pound carrots, peeled and cut into large dice
  • -- Naan for serving

Instructions: Have ready a small bowl. Place the curry in a small, dry skillet over low heat, stirring frequently until toasted and aromatic, 30-60 seconds. To avoid burning the curry, quickly turn it out of the skillet into the bowl.

Place the toasted curry, onion, shallots, garlic, ginger, chiles and 1/4 cup oil in a mini food processor and puree into a fine paste (or pound into a paste using a mortar and pestle), adding more oil as needed to make the mixture slightly loose.

Scrape the mixture into a medium-large pot over medium-low heat and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 5 minutes.

Add the butter and bay leaf. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is moderately brown and caramelized, 5-8 minutes, making sure to not scorch the bottom of the pot.

Add the cream, chicken broth, tomato paste and salt to taste. Simmer until the curry "breaks" and the oil has separated from the rest of the mixture, about 45 minutes. Taste and add more salt if needed.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°.

Place the chicken thighs and carrots into a 9- by 13-inch baking dish and pour the curry sauce over. Cover with foil and bake until the chicken is very tender, about 1 hour.

Remove from the oven. Let cool somewhat, then skim off some of the excess oil, if desired. Serve with the naan.

If made ahead, cool to room temperature then refrigerate. Skim off some of the excess oil, then reheat in a 350° oven.

Per serving: 331 calories, 24 g protein, 7 g carbohydrates, 23 g fat (8 g saturated), 127 mg cholesterol, 134 mg sodium, 2 g fiber.

Restaurant Chain Growth Report 01/22/20

( ) has released its latest Restaurant Chain Growth Report.

Growing Concepts of Multi Unit Operators
Concepts that have grown by at least 5% (if less than 50 units).

Houston, TX-based WILLIE’S RESTAURANTS (founded 1993) has increased by 1 unit, from 16 to 17 (6% growth). This family/casual bar and grill concept is open for lunch and dinner, with an $8-$20+ per person check average. The restaurants serve American cuisine. Average seating is for about 200. Catering service and banquet rooms are available. All the locations are in TX.

Atlanta, GA-based WILLY’S MEXICANA GRILL (founded 1995) has increased by 1 unit, from 27 to 28 (4% growth). This fast casual concept is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with a $6-$15+ per person price range. Beer and wine are served and average seating is for about 60. Catering and online ordering are available. All the restaurants trade in GA.

Washington, DC-based THE DC RESTAURANT GROUP has added a new concept called Northside Tavern (1). Other company concepts are 801 Restaurant & Bar (1), Bethany Blues (2), Bottom Line (1), Cafe Soleil (1), Canton’s Portside Tavern (1), Cedar Restaurant (1), Dickey’s Frozen Custard (1), Mango’s (1), Shaw’s Tavern (1), The Madhatter (1) and The Starboard (1). Overall company increase from 12 to 13 (8% growth). These upscale bar and grill concepts are open for lunch and dinner, with a $15-$50+ per person check average. Average unit has seating for about 200. Catering service and banquet rooms are available. Trading areas are DC, DE and MD.

Texas-based WINGS N MORE (founded 1986) has increased by 1 unit, from 2 to 3 (50% growth). This family/casual restaurant specializes in chicken wings, open for lunch and dinner, with full bar service. Per person check average is $8-$20+. Seating is for about 150. Catering, private party, drive-thru and online ordering services are available. All locations are in TX.

Emerging and Re-emerging Concepts
Concepts with 20 units or less who grew by at least 2 units.

California-based HUMMUS REPUBLIC (founded 2014) has increased by 3 units, from 2 to 5 (150% growth). This fast casual Mediterranean concept is open for lunch and dinner, with a $6-$15+ per person price range. Seating is for about 40. Catering and online ordering options are available. All the locations are in CA.

Repeat Growers
Concepts previously written about in the past 18 months.

Emeryville, CA-based PEET’S COFFEE & TEA (founded 1966) has increased by 63 units, from 190 to 253 (33% growth). This fast casual coffee shop is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner hours, with a $4-$12+ per person price range. Locations have limited seating. Online ordering is available. Trading areas are CA, CO, DC, IL, MA, MD, OR, VA and WA. We last featured this concept on 7/31/18 (1% growth).

Sodium Exposure in Restaurants

The restaurant industry has a large impact on the provision of food to the US population (1). Data suggest that foods obtained at restaurants contributed nearly one quarter (24.8%) of sodium consumed in the United States during 2007&ndash2008 (5). A 2012 study of 29,531 main entrée menu items served by the top 400 restaurants (by sales) in the United States found that the average sodium content was 1,512 milligrams (6). A 2013 study assessed changes in sodium content in identical fast-food restaurant foods between 2005 and 2011 and found that sodium content increased in 55% of meals assessed (7). The primary sources of sodium intake from restaurant foods are sandwiches, followed by pizza, hamburgers, chicken, Mexican entrées, and salads (1). Furthermore, What We Eat in America 2007&ndash2008 data indicated that the amount of sodium per 1,000 calories is lower for foods obtained from a store (1,519 mg sodium/1,000 calories) than for foods from fast-food or pizza restaurants (1,848 mg sodium/1,000 calories) and sit-down restaurants (2,090 mg sodium/1,000 calories) (5). In 2011, Americans dined out almost 5 times per week on average (8), and annual per capita away-from-home food purchases grew to $2,058 (9).

Although consumers can read and compare Nutrition Facts labels when purchasing packaged foods, acquiring information while eating out can be more challenging. Most restaurant foods and packaged food products sold only to restaurant or food service operations are exempt from mandatory declaration of the Nutrition Facts panel. The IOM recommended in a 2010 report that the Food and Drug Administration require nutrition labeling on food intended for restaurants (1). Restaurateurs can often obtain nutrition information from their suppliers, and public health practitioners can provide assistance on how to ask the supplier and what to ask the supplier for regarding nutrient information on products being considered for purchase. On the consumer side, the passage of section 4205 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 mandates calorie labeling on restaurant menus and menu boards for restaurants with 20 or more locations and the provision of additional written nutrition information, including sodium content, on request (10).

Some restaurant operators have already made efforts to provide consumers with more information about the nutrient content of their items. For example, Burgerville, which has 39 locations in Oregon and Washington, began printing calorie, fat, carbohydrate, and fiber content of specific orders on customer receipts as part of a program called Nutricate. In addition, nutrition information is voluntarily made available through in-store kiosks by the chains Au Bon Pain, and Uno Chicago Grill. In 2012, McDonald&rsquos began posting the calorie content of menu items on menu boards in the United States.

In 2011 Darden Restaurants, the world's largest full-service restaurant company, committed to a 10% reduction in sodium over the next 5 years and a 20% reduction over the next 10 years in &ldquoitems where it has the greatest opportunity to make a difference based on current sodium levels&rdquo for US menus (11). In the fast-food sector, between 2008 and 2010, Yum! Brands&rsquo restaurant Taco Bell reduced sodium by 20% in US products, and KFC made substantial reductions in salt in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand (12). Pizza Hut, another Yum! Brands restaurant, achieved sodium reductions of up to 50% in core products in Korea, Canada, and Australia but not in the United States (12).

Preventing Norovirus Outbreaks

About 20 million people get sick from norovirus each year, most from close contact with infected people or by eating contaminated food.

Norovirus is the leading cause of disease outbreaks from contaminated food in the US.

Infected food workers cause about 70% of reported norovirus outbreaks from contaminated food.

Norovirus often gets attention for outbreaks on cruise ships, but those account for only about 1% of all reported norovirus outbreaks. Norovirus is very contagious, and outbreaks can occur anywhere people gather or food is served. People with norovirus usually vomit and have diarrhea. Some may need to be hospitalized and can even die. Infected people can spread norovirus to others through close contact or by contaminating food and surfaces. Food service workers who have norovirus can contaminate food and make many people sick. In norovirus outbreaks for which investigators reported the source of contamination, 70% are caused by infected food workers.

The food service industry can help prevent norovirus outbreaks by:

  • Making sure that food service workers practice proper hand washing and avoid touching ready-to- eat foods, such as raw fruits and vegetables, with their bare hands before serving them.
  • Certifying kitchen managers and training food service workers in food safety practices.
  • Requiring sick food workers to stay home, and considering use of paid sick leave and on-call staffing, to support compliance.

Norovirus outbreaks from contaminated food are common in food service settings.

People infected with norovirus are very contagious.

  • While sick, they shed billions of tiny viral particles in their stool and vomit. It takes a very small amount&mdashas few as 18 viral particles&mdashto make another person sick. People can get sick if they are exposed to a tiny amount of stool or vomit from an infected person.
  • They are most contagious when sick with vomiting and diarrhea, but may also infect others before symptoms start and after they feel better.
  • Because symptoms come on suddenly, an infected person who vomits in a public place may expose many people.

Food service workers often go to work when they are sick and may contaminate food.

  • 1 in 5 food service workers have reported working while sick with vomiting and diarrhea. Fear of job loss and leaving coworkers short staffed were significant factors in their decision.
  • Of outbreaks caused by infected food workers, 54% involve food workers touching ready-to-eat-foods with their bare hands. Ready-to-eat foods are foods that are ready to be served without additional preparation, such as washed raw fruits and vegetables for salads or sandwiches, baked goods, or items that have already been cooked.
  • Observations of food service workers have shown that they practice proper hand washing only 1 of 4 times that they should.

Norovirus is hard to kill and stays on food, kitchen surfaces, and utensils. It can

Watch the video: Αντάμωμα Απανταχού Δροσοπηγιωτών - Εγκαίνια έκθεσης αγιογραφίας και ζωγραφικής (January 2022).