4 new Mexican restaurants in Morro Bay because white people SURE love their bad Mexican food. The China Dragon is Katrina, the Thai resty is MAYA, the brand new and recently-vacated upstairs Cuban place is something I’ve forgotten, and the former 3 Stacks & a Rock is Federico’s from the Wineman in SLO–which is Hawaiian-Fresh Mex. Got that straight?
Oh and while we’re on the subject: if you have established yourself as a gourmet on IG and post a) “taqueria” tacos with lettuce and grated cheese or b) Panda Express, prepare for an unfollow. I’m looking at you: The Eating Gypsy and SLO Tacos.
Roger has changed the name of his soon-to-be-opened Port House Embarcadero location to something Cajun… If you saw my stories last week you know but I’ve forgotten because frankly DON’T GIVE A RAT’S ASS because this guy–with the possible exception of Tortilla Town in Paso–cooks for the lowest-common-denominator of diner on the planet. You KNOW this is his third location in Morro Bay, right???
Ethiopian restaurant in the Kitchen Terminal co-lab space? Keep hearing about this, but not sure if there’s regular hours. Still haven’t had the African soup in the vegan place far back in the SLO Public Market.
PARKLETS GOING AWAY FAST THANK DOG get rid of those stupid filthy rat-infested eyesores. OR PAY. Wonder if Guiseppe’s or Finney’s will have to pay?
Here’s a funny twist. When Blast Brewing took over Figueroa Mountain in Arroyo Grande, Fig Mt retained ownership of the taps and Blast operates the resty around those beer sales. WAIT FOR IT: When Nick The Greek took over Blast Brew’s downtown SLO spot, they were required to maintain Blast Brewing’s operation of the beer taps. Talk about a co-lab. Probably a lot more complicated–and has something to do with the alcohol license–than I’m making it, but just weird. Oh and everyone’s noticed Nick has stained the outside of that beautiful brick building a pasty white, right? Maybe it will get a cerulean roof??? I’m sure the City of SLO approved this aesthetic, right? It just seems odd shit hit the fan when STALWORK stucco’d their building a stylish black on north Marsh, but a chain-store rubs a white rag over 100-year-old brick in the historic corridor and no one bats an eye?
Remember Belle Frites??? The polar opposite of which: LOADED is a new french fry place in the cursed Mexican location behind Shell on Foothill. Cheesy fries and chili fries and garlic fries. How evolved is that. What are we, NINE???
Speaking of 9-year-old-boy-food, I actually went to Quesadilla Gorilla the other day. I despise cheesy, simple, picky-eater food like this and pretty much had the review written as I walked in. “Here we go… quesadillas are for people who won’t eat real food… blah blah blah… Poly-bro food blah blah blah WHO eats this kind of shit, blah blah blah…” you get the idea. My plan immediately began falling apart. The menu was clear and simple to navigate. The cashier firm and professional and well-trained. I had the Chili Verde (I think they call it The Classic?) and it was just STUPIDLY good food. Full of whole black beans and gorgeously-sauced pork and the perfect amount of cheese. You get a couple of free sauces but honestly they can be skipped. I selected some sort of green ciantro thing and a medium roasted rojo, but they don’t do ANYTHING but detract from the beauty of this hot handful. And, they’ve expanded their hours to actually be open for lunch, so go check that out.
Across The Creamery, the French bakery that was never open is now not open. See how that works? People always ask, “How do you snoop out these restaurants that are going to fail with such accuracy, McConnell?” Consistency.
A series of events long in gossip on both sides I have little interest in getting to the bottom of has caused the chef to be gone from HighwaterSLO. Several-weeks old news here, but that’s what I get for not writing in a month. Also in the old news category: Park 1039 officially announced their closing almost 3 months after their last opening. Stefano’s moved to Old Nipomo. Across the freeway, Dutch Bros build their new place at the old Baby Jocko’s… don’t get the fascination there.
Likewise lack of fascination: We’re getting crumbl cookie because millenial who can’t cook and with no palate crave their delivered stoner-food. Loved the gushing tome from 805 Foodie on this wonderment. puh-LEEEEZE. So fucking sick of instagram-food. And it all has such a short life-span.
Tasio Baserga–well known in hospitality around here at the SLO Country Club and Trilogy and formerly at two of my favorite spots in Kona–was killed in a car accident in Northern California last weekend. He was 37. There is a Go Fund Me.
Wood-fired Neopolitan-style pizza place in Paso Market Walk coming along fast. Dang is that oven pretty. And expensive. Wonder who’s got the most expensive pizza oven in SLOco? I would bet it’s between Giuseppe’s Pismo, SLO Stills, and Via Caravaggio. Hell, they might all be Fiero’s.
Oh, and up the street at the Spirit gas station… you wanna hear something funny? Many of you know–even though I am the undisputed Taco King of the area–I almost completely avoid taco trucks. I know this befuddles many, because–I mean–*gasp* taco trucks are the backbone of Instagram-food OMG! I don’t go to taco trucks because they are inconsistent and many are cash-only and when I take the time to go someplace for food, I expect it to be there and I do NOT support the cash economy. I pay gobs of taxes and insurance and SO SHOULD YOU if you own a business. So a few weeks ago I announced TACOS BIRRIA ONE OF A KIND the best taco in Paso Robles but did so trepidatiously because it was a trailer. BUT! It took credit cards and I had driven by it at the same location for MONTHS. And now the funny part? The eating crow part? It. Has. Not. Been. There. Since. The. Day. I. Wrote. About. It. Every time I drive by now I’m just, like, you’ve GOT to be kidding me. Way to go steve. F that place and the award I gave them. Back to LA REYNA being the best taco in Paso.
We’re getting a Nordstom Rack. We’re getting a Porsche dealership. We’re getting another public market in the new version of the barn that accidentally burned down and got blamed on the bums so it didn’t have to be restored and they could just imagine a new one.
Is UNION & VINE coming to the long-abandoned resty space inside Springhill Suites in Atascadero of is that just a really old sign? Such a beautiful spot sitting empty for so long. Huge, though.
Speaking of HUGE: don’t forget Christmas at the Carrissa is coming up fast. That glorious old building is gonna SHINE and there’s never been anything like it in town. Book your holiday party now.
Poor Santa Margarita. The Porch is closing (again), so back to 2 restaurants in town. Just can’t seem to keep that magic number 3 alive.
2 new Mexican in Atascadero but MARTINEZ is merely moving from Paso, which I would hazard spells doom for the old Foster Freeze on the original highway through town. I feel like it used to have a car-hop in back? Am I imagining things? Huge piece of real estate in a prime development location: it’s GONE guaranteed. Wonder when it was built.
You saw my BEST OF SLO v.2022 rant last week, right??? Boy did that piss some people off. here’s the thing you gotta understand: I DON’T CARE.
MCCONNELL FOR MAYOR