By Elena Kadvany
Summer of openingsUploaded: Jun 17, 2014
The local dining scene is only continuing to heat up this summer, with numerous major openings scheduled up and down the Peninsula, from Menlo Park through Palo Alto to Mountain View. Here's what diners have to look forward to in the coming month.
Belcampo Meat Co.: This hyper-sustainable meat operation based in Larkspur will be opening a take-out/deli outpost at Town & Country Village in July. The 900-square-foot space will be take-out only, with a 12-foot traditional butcher case that will be filled with certified organic Belcampo meat ? everything from chicken, beef and pork to rabbit, quail, partridge, duck, sheep and goat. The shop will also serve to-go friendly lunch items like a lamb or sausage sandwiches, steak salad and chicken waldorf salad. The market is located between Sushi House and Tava Indian Kitchen in the back of the shopping center. www.belcampomeatco.com
Chez Franc: Haute hot dog purveyor Chez Franc is eyeing a "late summer" opening for its 415 California Ave. brick-and-mortar location, and a roving food truck "hopefully sooner," said owner Jacquetta Lannan. Lannan announced earlier this year that she snagged Dan Sung, a longtime sous chef at The Village Pub in Woodside, to come on board as chef. www.facebook.com/ChezFranc
Anatolian Kitchen, expanded: The long-awaited next-door expansion for Anatolian Kitchen is slated to open to diners in July, owner Dino Tekmedir told ShopTalk columnist Daryl Savage in May. With double the space (gained after Ramona's Pizza suddenly shuttered in May 2013), the 2323 Birch St. Mediterranean restaurant will have a new banquet room, bar menu, happy hour and live music. www.anatoliankitchenpaloalto.com
Zola: Look for this new French bistro from Guillaume Bienaimé, the former executive chef at now-shuttered Marché in Menlo Park. Bienaimé has been busy transforming 565 Bryant St., a space formerly occupied by Kosher deli Roast Shop, into his dream French restaurant, named after French author Émile Zola. He plans to open in July.
Later down the line?
They might not make it in this summer, but here are a few other projects of note in the pipeline in Palo Alto.
Evergreen Park Restaurant: This casual American grill headed to California Avenue is still in the permitting process, owner Robert Lindstrom said this week. When the news first came in March that he was taking over the former Uzumaki Sushi space at 415 California, Lindstrom mentioned straightforward dishes like rotisserie chicken and steak. He said the menu will be small and will draw on the California Avenue farmer's market, conveniently located outside the restaurant's doors.
Blue Bottle: Third-wave coffee pioneer Blue Bottle is going to make a killing at Lytton Gateway when it opens just across the street from the downtown Palo Alto Caltrain. The 1,500-square-foot space ? much bigger than most of its other Bay Area locations -- will serve the freshly roasted coffee, espressos, pour overs, etc., that Blue Bottle is known for as well as Belgian-style waffles, steel-cut oatmeal and seasonal soups and salads. No word yet on a definitive opening date, but watch out, Philz. www.bluebottlecoffee.com
Oren's Hummus: Already incredibly popular in Palo Alto, authentic Israeli eatery Oren's Hummus is finally opening at 126 Castro St. next month, with a soft opening scheduled for Sunday, July 6 and an official opening on Wednesday, July 9. Rip, scoop, eat, Mountain View! www.orenshummus.com
Pizza Studio: Build your own custom pizza from start to finish starting Tuesday, July 1 at Pizza Studio at The Village at San Antonio Center at 565 San Antonio Road. Diners can choose from five crusts, four sauces, four cheeses, numerous toppings, spices and herbs to create their ideal 11-inch pizza for less than $10. www.pizzastudio.com
Nekter: The juice craze has hit the Peninsula with full force this year, and Mountain View will get its own dose starting the week of June 23 when Nekter Juice Bar opens at the San Antonio shopping center. The Southern California chain serves up raw and vegan fruit-and-veggie juice combinations as well as smoothies and acai bowls. www.nekterjuicebar.com
Cocina Central:Do you like breakfast quesadillas, coconut flan and micheladas? If so, you'll want to head to the San Antonio shopping center in late July/early August to check out Cocina Central, a higher-end chain with farm-to-table sensibilities that will be slinging Mexican breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks and dessert at 2590 El Camino Real, Suite 3. www.cocinacentral.co
Sajj: Casual Mediterranean eatery Sajj is also slated to open at the San Antonio shopping center sometime soon, though unnamed roadblocks have delayed the project so far. You can preview the grub at a Menlo Park location or the Sajj food truck, which makes stops all over the Bay Area. www.sajjmenlopark.com
Bradley's Fine Diner: James Beard award-winning chef Bradley Ogden's foray into the more casual sphere, Bradley's Fine Diner (also referred to as B.F.D.), is on track to open at 1165 Merill St. in August, according to Menlo Park Economic Development Director Jim Cogan. Ogden said in late 2013 that the concept is a "Midwestern approach to my California style of food" which can mean everything from a whole roasted pork rack or housemade sausages to fresh pizza and oysters. Here's a dinner menu and Yelp page from Ogden's new B.F.D. in Houston, Texas, to get an idea. B.F.D. replaces Gambardella's, which left the 2,800-square-foot, plantation-style space across from the Caltrain station in December 2012 (and since reappeared, in a new form, with the ownership's opening of new Italian eatery Pazzo in San Carlos).