Restaurant News

Three critic’s picks during Downtown Boise Restaurant Week

Chandlers is one of the tempting participants in the sixth annual Dine Out Downtown Boise Restaurant Week.
Chandlers is one of the tempting participants in the sixth annual Dine Out Downtown Boise Restaurant Week. Idaho Statesman file

Get a taste of Downtown Boise’s dynamic dining scene during the sixth annual Dine Out Downtown Boise Restaurant Week from Oct. 28-Nov. 6.

The event, spearheaded by the Downtown Boise Association, is a great way to see what chefs around town are up to these days. Twenty-eight restaurants will offer prix-fixe menus throughout the week. Some places will dish up a two-course lunch menu for $10 per person, while others are putting out two-course ($15 per person) and three-course ($30 per person) dinner menus.

These special menus can be found at Red Feather Lounge, Chandlers, Juniper, Alavita, Capitol Cellars, Zee’s Rooftop Café, Fork, Main Street Deli, Flatbread Neapolitan Pizzeria and Berryhill, to drop a few names. Make reservations at the individual restaurants.

For more information, go to downtownboise.org.

Here are three recommendations:

▪  Downtown Boise newcomer Even Stevens (815 W. Bannock St., evenstevens.com) is sourcing lots of local foodstuffs for its two-course lunch menu ($10 per person). It features a Mediterranean salad (with arugula, tomato, cucumber, feta and dill vinaigrette) and an Idaho Muffuletta sandwich on crusty Gaston’s Bakery ciabatta with cured Italian meats, provolone, pickled veggies, tomato and olives.

▪  For a tasty two-course dinner ($15 per person), check out the special menu at Flatbread Neapolitan Pizzeria (800 W. Main St., flatbreadpizza.com) in the Eighth & Main building. Local food is the name of the game here as well. The main course consists of pan-roasted chicken breast with creamy Ballard Family Dairy Parmano polenta, blackberries, green beans, herbs and garlicky pan jus. Finish with almond milk panna cotta with coffee, cherries (from Sweet Valley Organics near Emmett) and a dollop of aromatic sage whipped cream.

▪  Chandlers (981 W. Grove St., chandlersboise.com) at Hotel 43 is offering a three-course dinner menu ($30 per person) throughout the week. Get the night started with a choice of house-cured salmon gravlax, wild mushroom soup, Caesar salad or a Steakhouse Wedge salad with ranch dressing, tomato and bacon. The second course includes a choice of veal piccata, Idaho trout amandine, pan-seared lamb chops or petite filet mignon. Wrap things up with either velvety Grand Marnier chocolate mousse or seasonal fruit cobbler with cinnamon-spiked ice cream.

Richard’s move update

Richard’s Café Vicino announced a few months ago that at the end of the year it would be moving from Boise’s North End into the Inn at 500 Capitol, a nearly completed boutique hotel at the corner of Capitol Boulevard and Myrtle Street.

Chef and owner Richard Langston is happy to report that things are on schedule for his larger, grander restaurant (minus the Café Vicino part of the name) to debut in its new spot early next year.

“The kitchen equipment goes in soon, so I’m happy about that,” he says.

Langston will close the North End restaurant at 808 W. Fort St. on Dec. 15 and put on a series of private soft openings in December at the new location, including a big New Year’s Eve bash for investors and such. Langston plans to open the restaurant to the public on Jan. 2.

The menu at Richard’s will mostly follow the same seasonal, local-food-tinged formula as always, but with more space comes a larger menu for lunch and dinner.

“We’ll move in with a similar menu as Café Vicino, except we will be expanding it,” he says. “Plus, we’ll be adding breakfast and Sunday brunch. That’s the biggest change.”

Take a virtual tour of the restaurant at youtube.com/watch?v=1k0CVPjNz3I.

Online: cafevicino.com.

Hawaiian eatery in Nampa moves

Island Kine Grinds recently moved from its small space on Garrity Boulevard to a much larger spot, in a former Pizza Hut, at 140 Nampa-Caldwell Blvd.

The restaurant has earned a loyal following over the years for serving Hawaiian and Filipino dishes ($6-$10) such as loco moco, kalua pig, spam musubi, teriyaki chicken and pork adobo.

New menu items include panko-breaded chicken katsu ($10) and crispy lumpia egg rolls ($5 for three), in addition to other appetizers and daily specials. Check out the various party packs to go, which would be perfect for Nov. 12 when the Boise State Broncos take on the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors at Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium (CBSSN at 5 p.m. MST).

Island Kine Grinds is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Saturday.

Online: islandkinegrinds.com.

Northwest Boise bakery closes

Foodies looking for a chocolate chip pumpkin muffin at the base of the Boise Foothills are out of luck — at least for now.

Owl Tree Bakery, 3910 Hill Road, closed last weekend. The locally owned bakery appeared in 2014 where Sol Bakery had operated.

However, it looks like the space soon will feature its third bakery in three years.

The Owl Tree Bakery Facebook page (now taken down) indicated that Owl Tree had been sold and would reopen “hopefully the first part of November.”

A sign outside the building says it will be called Poppy Seed Bakery and Cafe.

Michael Deeds contributed to this article. Submit restaurant news and tips to scene@idahostatesman.com.

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