Restaurant Wars- It’s Tough Out there

It’s probably because of the convalescence that has drained off any ambition that I ever had and  turned my brain to cottage cheese.  It’s from watching too many reruns of “Shark Tank”.  Anyway,  I noted it with glee when the SacBee reported that the restaurant in the Capitol basement had been shuttered because of roaches. Those of us who are pessimistic about the life management skills of our legislators and their minions will not be surprised that they’re not even competent to FEED themselves.  Anyway, they’re looking for a new operator and as the old nightclub joke goes, there’s a spot I wouldn’t give a leopard.

If you ever doubted that restaurants are a parlous way to make a living just look around Eureka. Avalon is gone, so is Hurricane Kate’s. Two Chinese restaurants have bitten it- the Far East and the Yeng -something on F Street, the one down from Partrick’s.  Liu’s is apparently still hanging in,  and hopefully they will survive their disastrous move to an  inferior location. I used to be a regular when they were near my office and they always served good,  not great, food.  The old location was within walking distance of many, many offices and they  were always busy at lunch.  No one works near them now.

Another recent closure was the Cutten Inn. Although I live nearby,  I ate there twice in twenty years, a greasy breakfast and a undistinguished entree from the period when they were trying to be a dinner house. The neighborhood scuttlebutt is that it’s been bought by the owners of the very successful Chalet House of Omelettes and that they have run into unexpected problems with the rehab.  From my innumerable viewings of “Flip or Flop”, the takeaway is that there are ALWAYS unexpected problems with a rehab. Let’s hope they can pull it off.

Our little enclave in Cutten is falrly well-served with food-  the deli at Murphy’s,  Tasty Tacos, Babe’s-  and believe me it’s handy to live near places like when you don’t feel like cooking.  I’m a big Tasty Tacos fan; I can make three meals from their chile relleno plate and I’ve recently realized how good their tostadas are.  Babe’s is reliable too and I don’t mind telling you that I have used their delivery service gratefully and they have the nicest staff in town. Babe’s has a very limited menu, pizza, salad and a couple kinds of pasta. My friend Frank Scolari said years ago that Cutten could use a good burger joint.

It’s still true. 


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