The food news keeps pouring in. Here’s what you need to know this week.
Mabel’s Kitchen, the lunchtime and bierock spot that reopened at 2134 Kern Street recently, will be open for dinner from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. this Friday. Normally, the restaurant is just open for lunch, but owner Susan Valiant is hoping to catch some customers who can’t make it there during the week. Susan — who says she misses seeing kids around — hopes dinner will be a family-friendly affair. It may also be a dinner option for folks who are going to see “Wicked” that day or going to the Grizzlies home opener. The regular menu and bierocks will be available.
Gazebo Gardens food truck nights are now happening every Friday as well as Saturdays. The Saturday event has gotten so busy that they’ve expanded it. There’s live music, craft beer and an all-around fun community vibe. Food trucks including Dusty Buns, Casa de Tamales tapas, Benaddiction and others are there. My February column about the Saturday night event is here.
Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt is coming to Fresno, a retail broker confirms. The chain will be opening in the new Marketplace at El Paseo on Herndon Avenue near Highway 99. It could be a while — as in, a year — before it opens though.
Pieology Pizzeria has signed a lease to open in that shopping center too. It’s the third location of the California pizza chain that will open here, with others headed for Fig Garden Village and the Campus Pointe development at Fresno State. No word yet on when it will open, but I’m betting it will be a while.
TGI Fridays is celebrating the 40th anniversary of offering potato skins (well heck, let’s make it a holiday and take the day off). To honor this most unhealthy version of a vegetable dish, the restaurant has relaunched potato skins on its menu. The new “loaded” potato skins feature melted cheddar — “more cheese per skin” this time Fridays says — and smoked applewood bacon, served with green onions and sour cream. They cost $8.99.
IHOP has offered French toast made from brioche, a rich bread common in France, for a while now. Now the restaurant is adding cinnamon swirl brioche French toast. The restaurants have also recently added drinks including the mango ‘mosa (OJ, lemon-lime soad and mango syrup), an orange grapefruit breeze (OJ, lemon-lime soda and grapefruit syrup) and a spicy Tom (spicy tomato juice served with a lemon wedge and a strip of bacon). These appear to be non-alcoholic.