Food & Drink

Here comes Boise Co-op in Meridian

You can buy pizza by the slice or an entire pie at the Boise Co-op and at the coming Meridian location.
You can buy pizza by the slice or an entire pie at the Boise Co-op and at the coming Meridian location.

The Boise Co-op is planning to open its new store Nov. 13 at The Village at Meridian, 2350 N. Eagle Road.

Complementing a big deli with all the fixings, rice bowls and thin-crust pizzas will be sold.

“We launched pizza about a month ago at the Boise store, and we will replicate that program in Meridian,” says Mo Valko, Boise Co-op’s marketing manager.

Hand-tossed specialty pizzas (offered as whole pies or by the slice) include a classic margherita (tomato, basil and fresh mozzarella); pepperoni, sausage and mushroom; barbecued chicken; and a vegetarian pie with roasted kale, roasted garlic, olive oil and shaved Parmesan cheese. People can also build their own pizzas chosen from a long list of ingredients. They are blistered in a gas-fired brick oven.

The Bowls from Around the World program features rice bowls inspired by various global cuisines. Expect to find a Patagonia Bowl (Argentinian rice, chimichurri beef and sweet potato), a Seoul Bowl (jasmine rice and spicy Korean barbecued chicken) and plenty of veggie bowls.

The Boise Co-op’s new digs has an exhibition kitchen and classroom area near the front of the store where people can take cooking classes and learn food preservation techniques.

“There are already 18 classes on the books for November and December,” Valko says.

Like at the Boise store, the Meridian location also will have a growler station with a rotating lineup of craft brews and fizzy kombucha.

“We’ll offer obscure, seasonal handcrafted beers from all over the country,” Valko says.

Boise Co-op’s Meridian store will be open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.

Online: boise.coop

On the Border restaurants close

At press time, the future remained unclear for the recently shuttered, Mexican-themed eateries at the Boise Spectrum, 7802 W. Spectrum St., and 3004 N. Eagle Road in Meridian.

Bill Gage, real estate director for D.D. Dunlap Companies, which owns and manages the majority of the Boise Spectrum, said he was trying to get more information. The On the Border at that location has been there since 1999.

A sign on the door indicates that the closure is temporary, Gage said. But what might reopen there is a mystery.

The Great Falls Tribune reported this week that Montana-based Shoot the Moon LLC, which owns the On the Border restaurants, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Quiznos sandwich shop in Boise closes

The restaurant at 1216 N. Orchard St. shuttered earlier this month.

A phone call to Quiznos corporate offices in Denver was not returned.

Quiznos franchises continue to operate in Boise at 2250 E. Gowen Road and 8665 W. Franklin Road, and in Eagle at 664 S. Rivershore Lane.

Olive Garden to donate to schools

It’s Spirit Night at Olive Garden restaurants Tuesday, Nov. 3.

From 4 to 10 p.m., 10 percent of restaurant sales, up to $1,000, will be donated to high schools around the nation. Patrons are encouraged to wear school colors.

In the Treasure Valley, Olive Garden at 320 N. Milwaukee St. in Boise will donate to Borah High School. Olive Garden at 16401 N. Marketplace Blvd. in Nampa will donate to Nampa High School.

Online: olivegarden.com.

A taste of Downtown Boise

Dine Out Downtown Boise is slated to take place Oct. 30-Nov. 8 at around 25 restaurants and bars in the Downtown corridor.

The annual event, put on by the Downtown Boise Association, is designed to get people to check out what’s going on in Boise’s vibrant dining scene.

Each participating restaurant will be offering an affordable prix fixe menu throughout the week, which may include small-plate selections, two-course lunches ($10 per person), two-course dinners ($15 per person) and three-course dinners ($30 person).

For example, Juniper, 211 N. 8th St., is offering a three-course dinner menu that includes a seared scallop with celeriac puree, braised short ribs with fried horseradish and chocolate torte with mascarpone and berries.

Besides a three-course dinner menu, Red Feather Lounge, 246 N. 8th St., also is offering a two-course lunch menu that includes a choice of grilled halibut tacos or roasted lamb dip sandwich with thyme au jus, served with a chosen side dish, and a choice of butterscotch beignets or pumpkin-apple hand pies.

Other participating establishments include Bodovino, Kindness, Saint Lawrence Gridiron, Fork, The Mode Lounge and Ruth’s Chris Steak House, to drop a few names.

Make reservations directly at the restaurants. To view the collection of menus, visit downtownboise.org.

Mekong Fresh Opens in Meridian

Mekong Fresh Noodle and Grill opened earlier this month next to Verizon at the Meridian Marketplace, 520 S. Meridian Road, kitty-corner from the Meridian Speedway.

Here, diners can get a taste of Southeast Asia with a menu that makes stops in Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. In other words, expect to see dishes that are common up and down the Mekong River, thus the name.

Stop by for a steaming bowl of pho (Vietnamese noodle soup) or some Thai-inspired stir-fried rice noodles. Other menu items include lettuce wraps (fish, pork or beef) and fragrantly marinated and grilled meats such as pork ribs, chicken and beef skewers.

Specialty entrées include red curry crab, tom kiem (stewed pork in gingery soy sauce) and mok pa, Laotian-style steamed fish served on a big banana leaf.

At lunchtime, diners can get Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches — made on a crusty roll with ham, pate, cucumber, jalapenos and pickled daikon radish and carrot.

Mekong Fresh Noodle and Grill is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday; 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.

Online: mekongfresh.net

Phone: (208) 908-6191

A ’tavola cooking classes

A ’Tavola, a gourmet market and deli at 1515 W. Grove St. in the Linen District, recently announced its cooking class lineup for the coming months.

On Nov. 5, chef Tim Holley and owner Lisa Peterson will be teaching people how to cook with all those comforting autumn flavors in their Celebration of Fall cooking class. Expect to learn some new recipes ranging from appetizers to desserts.

On Nov. 12, Holley and Peterson will be at it again with a class that favors Italian comfort food. The Lasagne, Risotto and Polenta class will focus on those Italian specialties and more.

On Dec. 10, join Holley and Peterson for the Easy Holiday Entertaining class, where people will learn how to make inventive noshes that are perfect for holiday parties.

The cooking classes ($65 per person) run from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Call 208-336-3641 to reserve a spot.

Online: atavolaboise.com

Submit restaurant news and tips to scene@idahostatesman.com.

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