Tuesday, March 23, 2021

A Boba Cafe Makeover for the Former Chalet

Posted By on Tue, Mar 23, 2021 at 8:53 PM

Sometimes the universe closes one restaurant and opens another. Stalwart fans of Eureka’s Chalet House of Omelettes have migrated from the shuttered Fifth Street location to its Cutten sibling for breakfast, but the little diner next to Annie’s Cambodian won’t be empty much longer. In fact, the new neighbors will be family.

Sarah Ith Phe and Henry Phe in front of their planned S.I.P. Cafe. - COURTESY OF SARAH ITH PHE
  • Courtesy of Sarah Ith Phe
  • Sarah Ith Phe and Henry Phe in front of their planned S.I.P. Cafe.

Namesake Annie Chau’s sister Sarah Ith Phe and her husband Henry Phe are busy pulling up carpet and painting the interior of the dining room, and replacing the stainless steel panels and hood exterior in the kitchen. Once the makeover and some electrical work is done, they’ll be opening S.I.P., a café serving Taiwanese boba teas, coffee drinks and snacks.

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Saturday, March 20, 2021

Esteban's Reopens in Arcata

Posted By on Sat, Mar 20, 2021 at 10:33 AM

After closing briefly upon of the death of its locally beloved proprietor Esteban Gonzales, Esteban's is open once again. His wife, Francisca Gonzales, reopened the tiny Mexican institution on March 4 with help from her nephew Luis Cilveron. Esteban was hospitalized in December of 2020 with COVID-19 and, despite the virus having left his system weeks later, succumbed to pneumonia in January of 2021. According to him, the family used the funds donated by community members to pay for Esteban's funeral and to reopen the restaurant.
An ofrenda for Esteban Gonzales. - PHOTO BY JENNIFER FUMIKO CAHILL
  • Photo by Jennifer Fumiko Cahill
  • An ofrenda for Esteban Gonzales.
"She is the one who puts all the flavor in the food — she is the one," says Cilveron. That flavor, in the pastor burrito and its deep orange rice, for example, remains the same as when he stirred the pots in the side kitchen and passed food across the tiny counter. "She's working hard to keep the legacy of Esteban, with the food the way he want it." But it's not always emotionally easy.

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Sunday, March 14, 2021

Laissez le Shanty Truck Rouler

Posted By on Sun, Mar 14, 2021 at 10:00 PM

No shade on the long-ago Shanty hot dogs but the solid food offerings have leveled up recently. A peek at the Shanty’s (213 Third St., Eureka) adjacent lot finds a lit patio built by a friend of the bar and a red truck with a sandwich board menu that will allow the bar to stay open under COVID regulations.
The Shanty truck parked beside its recently built parking lot patio. - PHOTO BY MARK MCKENNA
  • Photo by Mark McKenna
  • The Shanty truck parked beside its recently built parking lot patio.

The New Orleans offerings are an homage to owner Lynn Sandstrom’s wife Rana Krueger, whose 2020 death friends and regulars marked with a second line brass band parade through Old Town. Stacie Nunes, one of the bar’s managers, says, “Mardi Gras was one of her favorite bar holidays and we wanted to honor her and everything she meant to the Shanty.”

The Cajun-spiced Shanty burger. - PHOTO BY MARK MCKENNA
  • Photo by Mark McKenna
  • The Cajun-spiced Shanty burger.

To that end, co-manager and bartender Jon Fisher, with assistance from bartender and former chef Mike Vitiello, put together a lineup of hushpuppies, red beans and rice and fish po’boys, as well as a Shanty burger with remoulade. New Orleans-style Brabant fried potatoes take a tumble in garlic butter and Cajun spice, and come with sauce vert and remoulade. Order the Shanty fries and get them under red beans and andouille sausage, melted Swiss cheese, scallions and parsley.

Enjoying Brabant fries and a grilled cheese under the Shanty's patio heat lamp. - PHOTO BY MARK MCKENNA
  • Photo by Mark McKenna
  • Enjoying Brabant fries and a grilled cheese under the Shanty's patio heat lamp.

Times, Nunes notes, are tough and the bar hopes to give its regulars a break with items priced from $4 to $11. “We tried to keep it really cheap because we know people have to buy food in order to get a drink,” says Nunes. Not as cheap as a Shanty dog but close.

Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect Jon Fisher's role in creating the menu.
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Thursday, March 4, 2021

Humboldt Brewing Co. Back in Humboldt

Posted By on Thu, Mar 4, 2021 at 1:52 PM

After decades of out-of-county ownership as far away as South Carolina, Humboldt Brewing Co. is back in local hands. Andy Ardell, owner of Humboldt Brews, has bought the operation with his brother David Ardell. Starting this week, Carlos Sanchez, who brewed the company's original Red Nectar pale ale 30 years ago, will do so again today at Six Rivers Brewery on the very equipment it acquired from Humboldt Brewing Co.
New Humboldt Brewing Co. co-owner Andy Ardell with brewer Carlos Sanchez at Six River Brewery. - COURTESY OF MEREDITH MAIER
  • Courtesy of Meredith Maier
  • New Humboldt Brewing Co. co-owner Andy Ardell with brewer Carlos Sanchez at Six River Brewery.

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