MONTCLARION: May 27, 2016
It’s a blow to claustrophobics everywhere. Starbucks won’t be moving out of its cramped Montclair quarters and into the long-empty storefront at Mountain Boulevard and La Salle Avenue. The old Raimondi’s location seemed perfect for a coffee and wine bar — but the two sides reportedly couldn’t agree to terms.
So, where does that leave Montclair Village? As soaring rents continue to push out the little guys, who can afford this prime corner space?
Please, not another bank or real estate agency. Or nail salon, sushi bar or yogurt shop.If you ask me, what we need is a live music venue. Short of that, folks have mentioned a butcher, a baker or even an Apple store. Whatever your preference, the Montclair Village Association’s Daniel Swafford says it’s time to be proactive. If you know a business that would be a good fit, lobby on behalf of Montclair. It’s time to make a pitch for a business that fills a need — not just an empty space.
Speaking of restaurants, I’ve got more information on this week’s Food Network “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” segment on Clove and Hoof. Guy Fieri wolfs down the cheesesteak and fried chicken sandwiches — both mainstay items at the Temescal restaurant — which was also just named one of Bon Appétit Magazine’s 10 Favorite Butcher Shops nationwide.
Petunia power: Where have all the flowers gone? Some are bedding down in a little planter box outside Camber. Waiter David Quintero gets the credit for the colorful array of whatever he finds on sale at Rite Aid. He says he loves life, salsa music and flowers and the feeling with flowers is mutual. “My girls love me,” he says. “I’m the only one who waters them.”
Email bag: One man’s shopping district is another man’s —‰’hood,” according to reader Brad Newsham, who shares the conversation he had recently with a Rockridge Safeway clerk. After assuring the young man that he was exactly at the 15-item limit, the checker remarked “It’s all ‘hood.” “Did you say, ‘It’s all ‘hood?’ ” Newsham asked. Yes, he did … and apparently customers know Michael for this signature line.
Animal tales: Call this Fox News. A Montclair resident heard noises on his deck near the top of Shepherd Canyon Road last week and found four red and gray kits with their mom. The wee ones were having a grand time playing and seemed unaware that they were being photographed for a post on the Nextdoor listserv.