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Preview of Batch & Brine in Lafayette Opening June 4th

3602 Mt. Diablo Blvd, Lafayette

Batch & Brine, a new restaurant opening in Lafayette on June 4th is all ready and yesterday there was a preview to see how everything came out. As you can see in the above photo the outside is wrapped in reclaimed wood interspersed among living walls with indigenous succulents making this one of the nicest looking restaurants in the area. The inside is equally as impressive with giant windows that open butterfly-style allowing both light and fresh air in. The outside has a long fire pit and plenty of tables in front and to the sides. Don’t forget to check out the photos below for a closer look. The food I tried tasted great and am looking forward to trying the house-made pastrami sandwich!

Batch & Brine will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. for lunch and dinner; brunch is served on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Check out their gallery here.

From a press release:

With a menu rooted in the family’s passion for bold flavors and seasonal food, the ownership team and Executive Chef Suarez, an alum of the French Culinary Institute and former culinary director for Rosa Mexicano, are expanding the definition of the classic burger at Batch & Brine, and also offering hearty appetizers, salads, sliders, loaded fries, and weekend brunch. At Batch & Brine, burgers are the main event, but these burgers are globally inspired and take the concept of a hand-held meal to a new level. On the opening menu, guests will find nine, crave-worthy burger creations blending flavors and ingredients that celebrate the family’s Mediterranean and New Mexican heritage. Must-try burgers include patriarch Zafer Abu-Ghaben’s Kufta Burger and Falafel Burger, Chef Suarez’s Steak au Poivre Burger, and Victor Ghaben’s Hatch Chile Burger, featuring the one-of-a-kind “Hatch” chile, which is grown only in New Mexico’s Hatch Valley. Other staples on the menu include pickle-brined chicken and house-made pastrami sandwiches; kale, beet, cauliflower or grilled ribeye salads; the Shaved Ribeye Bao Slider; and a French fry selection topped with duck confit, Hatch chile verde, or pastrami and cheese.

Plenty more photos after the jump… Continue Reading


Starbucks (Not Reserve) Opening in Downtown Walnut Creek this Summer

1601 Mt. Diablo Blvd, Walnut Creek

Earlier this year we learned that Starbucks would be coming to downtown Walnut Creek where Vitamin Shoppe used to be with scuttlebutt indicating it would be one of those fancy “Reserve” cafes but according to a Starbucks district manager I spoke with it won’t be a Reserve. However, at 2,500 sf, and seating (including a bar) for 60, offering nitro cold brew there will be great ambiance.

A short hop away is Coffee Shop and Peet’s Coffee so there will be plenty of coffee options around there.


California Fish Grill Coming to Orchards Shopping Center in Walnut Creek

The Orchards at Walnut Creek

SoCal based California Fish Grill is coming to the Orchards shopping center at the corner of Ygnacio Valley Rd. and Oak Grove Rd. in Walnut Creek. Check out their menu here.

From their website:

The ocean is our backyard. It’s part of who we are. At California Fish Grill we believe it should be easy to enjoy healthy, delicious seafood, at a great price, as often as you want. This is precisely what Victor Topete, founder of California Fish Grill, found himself thinking in 1998. Since then, we’ve been grilling and crafting delicious, healthy, seafood favorites for our growing family of loyal guests. Pledged to have respect for the ocean, we promise that our seafood can be enjoyed for years to come by partnering with reputable fisheries that provide only the freshest wild-caught and responsibly farm-raised fish.

You’re among family and friends now. Savor our open kitchen as vegetables and herbs are chopped, fish is hand battered, and meals are cooked on our signature flame grill. Open a bottle of wine and enjoy an appetizer, while we cook and prepare everything by hand. It’s hard work… but for us, it’s worth it.


Batch & Brine Opening June 4th in Lafayette

3602 Mt. Diablo Blvd, Lafayette

Late last year we learned that a new restaurant called Batch & Brine would be coming to Lafayette where Swad Indian Cuisine used to be and they are planning to officially open on June 4th according to their Facebook page. Check out their Instagram gallery here. According to this Oakland magazine article the owner operators come from Hubcaps, Broadericks Roadhouse, Mel’s and other restaurants. In addition to burgers there will be a brunch menu, 20 beers on tap (+ wine and cocktails), and something I look forward to, house-made pastrami sandwiches!

The vertical living garden walls spaced throughout the exterior looks amazing; this is going to be a great addition to Lafayette.


Black Angus Steakhouse Reopens in Pleasant Hill

3195 N. Main St, Pleasant Hill

Black Angus Steakhouse, which closed last July in Pleasant Hill after a small electrical fire damaged the building exterior, has reopened with a similar interior and slightly revamped menu. Check out their menu here. I had a chance to try the prime rib steak, which are aged at least 21 days, and it was super-tasty.

More photos of the inside after the jump… Continue Reading


Panera Bread Closing Tomorrow at Plaza Escuela in Walnut Creek

Plaza Escuela, Walnut Creek

Thanks to everyone who emailed that Panera Bread is closing in Plaza Escuela in downtown Walnut Creek. Tomorrow will be their last day:

Our bakery-cafe at 1140 Locust Street in Walnut Creek will permanently close its doors at the end of the day on Tuesday, May 22nd.

Of course, you can still get your favorites at one of our nearby bakery-cafes. We hope to see you soon.


Progress on Solo Vida Restaurant in Danville

312 Railroad Ave, Danville

A new restaurant called Solo Vida is planned for the new construction going on at the corner of Railroad Ave. and Church St. in Danville. As you can see in the above photo the outside looks mostly done. According to a LinkedIn profile it looks like the CEO of this restaurant is also CEO of Primavera Ristorante in San Ramon. Stay tuned…


Update on The Foundry Food Hall in Downtown Walnut Creek

Robert Becker with Digital Frontier
1250 Locust Street, Walnut Creek

Back in 2016 we learned of a new food hall called The Foundry coming to downtown Walnut Creek across the street from the Century movie theater and recently there was a Design Review meeting with new details. As you can see in the updated rendering above the new plan calls for a one story building with mezzanine towards the back of the building. The mezzanine will include restrooms, seating, and an indoor/outdoor bar with a large covered patio overlooking the courtyard. There will also be an outdoor kids movie theater, play structure and flex area to offer games like corn-hole, live music etc. I’m hoping this will open in 2020 and they’ll be able to fit a koi pond!