Monday, September 30, 2013

Carl's Jr. opens third Idaho Falls restaurant

A juicy burger from Carl's Jr., now with three locations in Idaho Falls
In case you're wondering, Carl's Jr. has opened its third Idaho Falls restaurant, at West Broadway and Utah Avenue. It happened on Thursday. I had hoped to be ahead of the curve and have an opening date for my faithful readers, but there was a change at the CKE Enterprises office in California and my trusted source, Kelly Grieve, was no longer there. Alas, her successors were not as good about giving me up-to-the-minute intelligence. I only noticed today that the store had opened.

Win a few, lose a few. This is the third time, so the thrill isn't what it was two years ago when the first Carl's Jr. was opening on 17th Street. And in the fullness of time, a new fast-food hamburger restaurant counts for little in the world of breaking news.

Nevertheless, here it is: Idaho Falls Carl's Jr. No. 3. If you're in the mood, they're waiting for you.

Idaho Falls Sperry Van Ness office ranks in nation's top 20

Congratulations to the Idaho Falls office of Sperry Van Ness/High Desert Commercial, which placed 20th in the nation in sales through the end of August. Individually, adviser Randy Waters ranked ninth.

Founded in 2001, Sperry Van Ness International has 137 independently owned and operated franchise offices in 31 different states and the District of Columbia. It has 780 advisers across the country and is one of the largest and fastest growing commercial real estate brokerage franchisors in the industry, with more than 1,000 advisors and staff serving more than 150 markets.
The company was recently recognized as a “Top 10 Brand in Commercial Real Estate” by the annual 
Lipsey Company survey. Based in Irvine, Calif., the organization provides brokerage, tenant representation, consultation, asset management, property management, leasing, accelerated marketing and auction services.
Sperry Van Ness affiliates represent clients in billions of dollars annually in office, multi-family, retail, industrial, self-storage, hospitality and land transactions. For more information, visit www.svnhd.com .

Friday, September 27, 2013

New Dad's Travel Center plans Oct. 7 opening

Dad's Travel Center General Manager Kevin Bird outside the new store scheduled to open a week from Monday.
The new Dad's Travel Center at Hitt Road and North Yellowstone is scheduled to open Oct. 7.

The center has 16 gasoline/diesel pumps and two extra high-speed diesel pump, said Kevin Bird, general manager for Dad's. Located on 47 acres, there is a 3,250-square-foot convenience store.

Bird said the plan has been all along to build a travel center on Hitt Road. Dad's moved in to a smaller store in 2003 to get a feel for the location, and was ready to move five years ago when the economy went in the tank. With their 10-year lease due to expire and the economy improving, they finally decided last year to develop the land.

It has been a big project. Making room for the store, the pumps and the parking lot they moved 871 dump trucks of topsoil. Landscaping is due to take place next week before they open. When finished, there will be areas for picnicking.

In the store, they are offering Champ's chicken, a brand that started in Auxvasse, Mo., in 1999 and now has more than 500 locations in the United States. They will also have pizza by the slice, baked onsite, from a well-known take-and-bake operator. They will have Reed's Dairy ice cream by the scoop and also be an outlet for Reed's Dairy products.

The store and the pumps are all lit by LED lighting, which is more expensive but brighter and more cost-efficient over the long haul, Bird said.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Natural Grocers now hiring, plans Nov. 12 opening in Idaho Falls

It's hard to miss something as big and purple as the Natural Grocers store being built in Idaho Falls.
Natural Grocers, a 58-year-old chain based in Colorado, has set Nov. 12 as the opening date for its 15,000-square-foot store on 17th Street, said Nancy Flynn, spokeswoman for the company.

In addition to the store, the developer, Leadership Circle, LLC, of Montrose, Colo., is seeking eventually to build a restaurant and a retail store on the 4.42 acres, but the only definite plans at the moment are for the grocery. The 4,816 square-foot-restaurant pad and 11,250-square-foot retail pad are listed with Randy Waters of Sperry Van Ness High Desert.

Natural Grocers has stores in 12 states, with six more scheduled to open this year. In 2011 it opened stores in Boise and Missoula, and most recently it opened a store in Helena, in December.

"We really cater to specialty diets, gluten-free, non GMO (genetically modified organisms)," Flynn said. Because of their small footprint (a Whole Foods store, by contrast, is typically twice the size) and their emphasis on personal communication and education rather than advertising, they are able to keep their costs down. "We feel like we're the label-readers in the market," Flynn said.

When it opens, the store will employ around 25 people. All the produce they sell is USDA-certified organic, and Flynn said they buy local produce "every chance we get."
The company's Web site is www.naturalgrocers.com.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Whitewater Grill plans opening Monday, Sept. 30

Whitewater Grill chef Joel Henry
The new, totally redone Whitewater Grill is set to open Monday, a little later than originally forecast but Chef Joel Henry says it will be worth the wait.

"I wanted it to be the way I wanted," he said. Excluding the kitchen, the restaurant has been remodeled from front to back. "We wanted to modernize it without making it cold," he said. Paintings, photos and sculpture by local artists such as Elise Wilding are on the walls.

At the front, there is a dessert and espresso bar, in the middle a tap bar and lounge, in the back an 1,800-square-foot banquet and meeting room. Next spring he plans to build a deck on the roof that will increase maximum occupancy from 140 to about 170.

Henry, 32, grew up in Traverse City, Mich., and it was there he became executive chef of Poppycock's, a local restaurant, at age 21. He attended the Johnson and Wales College of Culinary Arts in Providence, R.I., but thinks there is no substitute for working in an actual restaurant kitchen.

"I believe in old-school no-frills cooking," he said. No-frills doesn't mean no imagination, however. "If you're not creative enough, there's no reason to be doing what you're doing," he said. The new Whitewater menu will feature what Henry calls casual contemporary American food.

Hours will be 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday; and 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, with brunch from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

To contact him, e-mail whitewatergrill208@gmail.com. To find Whitewater Grill on Facebook, follow this link: https://www.facebook.com/whitewatergrill208.