Closed: Central BistroCentral Bistro in the Historic Train Depot has closed; whether the shuttering is temporary or permanent remains up in the air.
Ownership is blaming the restaurant's woes on construction downtown, specifically the prep work on the Fourth Avenue underpass and trench work along Toole Avenue. I don't imagine that's much of a help, but right now, all downtown restaurants are suffering, because the area is practically a maze.
Prior to this latest construction fiasco, Central Bistro seemed doomed, as it simply never created a buzz. While Cup Café and Hotel Congress might be packed across the street, Central Bistro would often be empty.
My question is directed to the city: Why subsidize relatively unknown owners who didn't already have a restaurant following? Were offers ever made to Janos Wilder, the Lurias, Sam Fox or the Elefante family--the owner of Mama Louisa's, who have successfully run a restaurant for more than 50 years?
Closed: Bowz RestaurantBowz on Oracle Road has also closed. The place had really good sushi, but perhaps Oracle Road is too cluttered with signage for restaurants like this to get noticed. An anchor store nearby might have helped with exposure and foot traffic.
Schweppes AwayThanks to the Noshing reader who alerted us that Schweppes bitter lemon soda can be found at the 17th Street Market; 840 E. 17th St.; 792-2588. Also, every year around this time, I need a fresh fig fix, and the 17th Street Market can oblige.
Ice Cream SocialFor the third consecutive year, Dreyer's has invited ice cream lovers to break the ice with new and longtime neighbors by nominating their blocks for old-fashioned ice cream socials. More than 17,000 ice cream lovers, from Hawaii to Maine, submitted their stories. By the end of summer 2007, Dreyer's will have thrown a total of 4,500 ice cream block parties nationwide.
Beth Blair of Oro Valley is one lucky winner (joining winners in Sierra Vista and Green Valley). This Saturday, Beth will host 100 neighbors, including the Oro Valley Police Department and the Golder Ranch Fire District.