Cloud kitchen helps Chesapeake Bay Bistro to expand

Nowadays if you can figure out a successful recipe for running a restaurant the best way to maximize your potential is through expansion. That’s exactly what’s going on at Chesapeake Bay Bistro a year and half after opening in Ahwatukee. Unlike their brick and mortar location the owners opted to open their new location in a cloud kitchen inside the Tempe Food Court earlier this month. They’re not stopping there as third location will also be in a cloud kitchen in their former hometown of San Diego in January 2023.

“For restaurant owners, the past year has been challenging with staffing, higher prices for food supplies and rising costs for rent and utilities,” says James Brown, who co-owns the Ahwatukee-based bistro with his wife, Yolanda. “Adding locations through a food-court style expansion makes sense on many levels.”

Expansion into a cloud kitchen

Working in a cloud kitchen also gives them the opportunity to open new concepts without all the expenses of a brick and mortar location. That’s why the couple is planning to open a Creole/Cajun concept out of Tempe in 2023. Another reason for the expansion into cloud kitchens is CBB is seeing a lot of take-out from their Ahwatukee location.

“We believe that the food delivery model is the future and allows us to fulfill our customer base request,” said Brown said. “Sixty percent of our sales are call in or pickup now.” CBB works with several food delivery services to deliver the hot and fresh seafood dishes for delivery within 15 minutes.

To help alleviate some of the staffing issues of the past few years, the couple’s three grown sons have joined them in restaurants. One son will be running the new San Diego location in the Aztec Food Hub near the San Diego State University campus. The other two sons help out when mom and dad can’t be at the Ahwatukee location.

“Using cloud kitchen locations benefits small mom-and-pop restaurants like ours in several ways, allowing us to keep our labor and maintenance costs down,” Brown said.

The Tempe Food Court location is at 1900 E. 5th St. 85281, not far from the ASU campus and Tempe Marketplace. The Ahwatukee location is at 5033 E. Elliot Rd. Phoenix 85044. For more information visit their website or to order for delivery or takeout check out the delivery services.

 

Opinion: Pump down the volume, why are restaurants so loud?

I consider myself as a blogger a messenger of information about the local restaurant and food community. Posts on food festivals, restaurants opening, wine tastings and on rare occasion my opinion may get in the way based on an experience(s).

Was it Gene Simmons or David Lee Roth who said “if it’s too loud, you’re too old”. I remember me and my sister telling that to our parents as teenagers as we cranked up the radio listening to Van Halen and Led Zeppelin around the house and in the car. Now it’s me that’s too old as I can’t understand why restaurants need to crank it up with DJs or loud music during our dining experience. Loud music is one of  a few pet peeves I have about the restaurant industry.

Recently I visited an establishment for brunch hoping to enjoy several dishes, cocktails and a visit with friends. Instead we were one and done as it was simply to loud to hold a conversation. On weekends it’s the norm in old town Scottsdale and other parts of the valley to wake up to loud music with your eggs bendict and Bloody Mary, but why?

It’s not just brunch you need to bring ear plugs to as were seeing more restaurants turning the volume up during lunch and dinner.

Loud music in restaurants isn’t new.

This trend isn’t new as this Bon Appetit article from 2010 suggests. I guess to a certain demographic loud music says a restaurant is “lively and successful”, to me it means ” you’re not getting my business at this time”. Many articles have been written since then and not just in restaurant related magazines and websites.

This Vox article mentions how the loud decibel level can be a health threat and this 2015 Bloomberg article calls out chef’s and restaurateurs to turn the volume down.

Acoustic technology and a restaurants design have effected the decibel level but the volume dial can cure that on a daily basis.

Good thing the Phoenix area has a diverse community of restaurants so I’ll patronize those offering good food, service and dialed down noise level.

What do you think about restaurant noise levels? Drop me an email or comment about what your restaurant pet peeves are and I may address it.

Picture credit: Seattle Times

Spinelli’s Pizzeria offers CBD infused cocktails and pizza

The pain relieving extract from the marijuana plant, Cannabidiol (CBD) is showing up on restaurant menus and in food products. The non- psychoactive ingredient won’t get you high but will help you with physical and mental issues. Spinelli’s Pizzeria on Mill Ave. has introduced CBD infused pizza’s and 6 infused specialty cocktails.

“I truly believe in innovative forms of treating pain and mood disorders and I’m so proud we’re the first bar and restaurant in the area to offer CBD extract to our guests,” said Christopher Palma, owner of Spinelli’s Pizzeria.

Guests can add a single dose of CBD oil to any cocktail, soda, beer or slice of pizza for pizza $5. To add to a whole pizza it’s $10. Spinelli's Pizzeria

6 CBD infused specialty cocktails are available for the month of February and are described below.

The Drug Mule– Tito’s Vodka, Agwa de Bolivia, Goslings Ginger Beer, fresh mint, CBD Extract $12

CBDITO– A Tito’s vodka mojito with CBD Extract $12

Cucumber Lemonade– Hendrick’s Gin with homemade lemonade and CBD extract $12

Wake & Bake– A Jack Daniel’s cocktail infused with CBD extract that taste like waffles and syrup $9

The Caregiver’s Daughter– This fruity cocktail made is made with Southern Comfort and infused with CBD extract $9

Doobie Snack– Malibu, melon liquor, Crème de Banana, pineapple juice and CBD extract $9

Spinelli’s Pizzeria is at 420 S. Mill Ave. Tempe 85281. For more information follow Spinelli’s on Instagram and Facebook

Scoopwell’s Dough Bar’s grand opening offers FREE dough for a year

After finding loyal fans for their cookie dough Scoopwell’s Dough Bar is opening Saturday January 12th at Phoenix’s Uptown Plaza. Kendra and John Scheer started Scoopwell’s Dough Bar in early 2018 as a pop-up at Tempe Public Market Cafe. The pop-up was a success selling out and the husband and wife team decided to open a permanent store front.

All photos courtesy of Awe Collective

“We can’t wait to open in Uptown Plaza,” said Kendra Scheer. “Whether you checked us out earlier this year, or you’ve never tried edible cookie dough before, we promise to save you something sweet.”

Scoopwells’ offer 11 different dough flavors and even more sweet toppings. Gourmet flavors include Lemon Poppyseed, Brownie Batter and Rainbow Sprinkle are made from scratch. Delicious seasonal flavors and other year round favorites will be served. Mix-in Twix bars, peanut butter chips, pretzels and others for even more enjoyment.

When the doors open at 10:00 a.m. sharp the first 50 people in line will get Free Dough For A Year. The punch card they receive will be good for 1 small cup of dough a month. If you’re not one of the first 50, you’ll receive a free collectible gift and entered to win an Uptown Plaza gift bag.

For an even sweeter deal Scoopwell’s will be handing out gifts and giveaways all weekend long.

Find Scoopwell’s at 100 E. Camelback Rd #164 Phoenix 85012.

 

The Bodhi is packed with healthy food & information

Fast casual and healthy eating continue  to be priorities in the local restaurant community heading into 2018 and the newly opened The Bodhi in Tempe checks both boxes.

For those looking to extend new year resolutions to eat healthy as long as possible this restaurant can help you extend it.

Steak and eggs bowl. All photos courtesy of The Bodhi

In the heart of downtown Tempe on College Ave. will serve more than the  ASU crowd with its organic vegetables and vitamin rich foods at an affordable price.

The Bodhi provides

Whether you’re building a bowl, having salad or taking a cold pressed juice on the run all ingredients are crafted for a healthy and nutritious diet with research to see which ingredients and combinations work best.

Their blog provides information and facts on nutrition and healthy habits for its customers.

521 S. College Ave #112 Tempe 85281. Full menu and more! (480)699-0409Bodhi

 

Wine & Spirits Trends of 2011

As we enter 2011 here are some trends to look for in the coming year.

Malbecs from Argentina are still hot.

Carmenere from Chile will be one of the next grapes to see influx of. Brought from Bordeaux over 100 years ago, it’s no longer common in Bordeaux.

Root beer & cotton candy are next in the flavored vodka segment. Root beer floats to be a cocktail we will see.

Obscure varietals such as Ruche & Grignolino, etc. from Italy will make some head way.

Micro brewed beers are still gaining steam & fans.

New Zealand’s sauvignon blancs will continue to see their rise and the emergence of NZ pinot noirs may give other pinots a run for their money.

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