But it’s also an excuse to look back at the restaurant scene in 2012. We gained some great restaurants, and lost some really good ones too. Here’s some highlights of who I’ve written about over the last year, but I’m sure there’s more worth noting. Feel free to add your favorites in the comments section.
We said good-bye to:
- QN4U in Clovis closed after its spicy owner Brent Walton died of a heart attack. His widow Kim still runs the catering business of the same name, but the world lost a creative character when Brent left us.
- Grand Palace Chinese restaurant closed about a year after it opened, much to the dismay of its fans. But fear not, the restaurant is scheduled to reopen in early 2013 at the former Carrows Restaurant at 1484 E. Shaw Ave. It will have a new name: New City Chinese Restaurant.
- Water 2 Wine closed after moving into that gorgeous building at 522 Pollasky Ave. Here’s hoping someone will take over that place and its beautiful patio soon.
- The Victoria Rose Restaurant in Old Town Clovis closed this month. Owner Nathan Lewis-Copeland tried his best to bring us organic, local fare, along with his espresso bar and tea, but sadly, it just didn’t pan out.
We said hello to:
- Dusty Buns Bistro opened its brick-and-mortar location in April at the corner of Weldon and Echo avenues, drawing its food truck fans like flies to local, organic honey.
- Fans of Hunan Chinese Restaurant scrambled to tell me about its second location that opened in March at 950 Herndon Ave. in the Trading Post Shopping Center. And the original location is being remodeled.
- Fasika Ethiopian restaurant introduced diners to its eat-with-your-fingers food at 4712 N Blackstone Ave. Diners keep raving about this one, and I go for the food as much as I do for the quiet charm of its friendly owners.
- A Fresno food truck explosion introduced us to TaKo BBQ, Summertime Pies, K’s Pasta and Benaddiction, all of which participate in various Cart Hop events around town.
- And 2012 was the year of the local cup of coffee. The young owner of On The Edge opened her place in Old Town Clovis, along with former Detroit Lions football player Zack Follett’s Kuppa Joy. Fresno lost the downtown Kern Coffee House, but gained The Coffee Lounge, which opened at the corner of First Street and Gettysburg Avenue.
Who else is worth noting — whether coming or going — in 2012?