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Railroad Ave Eatery?

Original post made by Resident, Another Pleasanton neighborhood, on Feb 25, 2009

I'm helping with a viability survey for a potential new business in the vicinity of the future Firehouse Arts Center on Railroad Ave. The concept revolves around a cafe/bakery/food market hybrid: fresh, interesting, made-on-premises food (to take out or eat at a few self-serve tables), . . . a casual but hip neighborhood feel . . . place to read the paper, drink coffee, maybe pick up an interesting sandwich/cookie/bread or a prepared upscale entree to take home for dinner. . . or even just to find a good 'foodie' ingredient without having to trek out to Trader Joe's or Whole Foods.

There's nothing else in the immediate area, despite the generous dosage of cafes a block or two further by Angela St.

Any thoughts? Candid input greatly appreciated. . .

Comments (17)

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Posted by Rock
a resident of Amador Estates
on Feb 25, 2009 at 8:41 pm

You got my vote. The Firehouse will be an incredible hub of activity and will greatly enhance our downtown. Theater productions, afternoon speaker series, jazz performances, etc. Studies show that theater patrons spend money at nearby restaurants and retailers. A business located near the theater will be successful, especially within a walkable environment. Good luck with your concept!!!

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Posted by Consumer
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Feb 25, 2009 at 9:37 pm

Would your concept be like an Oakville Grocery? If it would be like that I would give a very loud YES! We do not need another mediocre market in the area but a "high end" specialty store with very fresh -high quality - tasteful choices would be very much appreciated. I know many folks who would like to see Whole Foods or Andronicos on a smaller scale anywhere on the Main St. side of town. I would also love to see a California Pizza Kitchen or Cheesecake Factory type restaurant on Main St. It would be a vibrant, diverse and affordable choice for our downtown shoppers and would be sure to bring in a crowd. Good Luck and I look forward to your business.

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Feb 25, 2009 at 11:11 pm

Hi, I like the fact that people are thinking of solutions to the downtown problem instead of just whining (cheers to you!). I personally vote for more of a market/grocery (Whole Foods substitute) than something focused on food eaten on the premises. I can eat in downtown, but I can't get all my organic cooking "needs" met by just the Farmer's Market. So I continue to drive to Whole Foods in San Ramon to pick up the items that I can't get at the Farmer's Market (or Raley's). This includes bath and body products, medicine, etc. I would love to walk to downtown, sit for coffee or a meal, go grocery shopping, and then walk home with my wagon filled with the weeks' supplies.

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Posted by More patio areas
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 25, 2009 at 11:18 pm

I would like to see something with prepared food to eat on a patio or at the park. We need more areas to gather, be outside, possibly with dogs.

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Posted by John
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 26, 2009 at 11:31 am

Eating with dogs? I really prefer not to. You can go to France if you want to eat with an animal.

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Posted by More patio areas
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 26, 2009 at 11:33 am

Ok then, outside areas to eat so that those folks with their furry friends can sit outside.

It's been stated over and over again one of the reasons why Walnut Creek continues to draw visitors is the dog-friendly atmosphere of being out and about with your furry friend. Even the shops allow the 4-footed visitors inside.

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Posted by John
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 26, 2009 at 2:37 pm

We're not ALL dog people. We do you insist on imposing your animals upon the rest of us while we're in shops and restaurants? There are some *people* I'd rather not come into contact with let alone their random animals.

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Posted by county health inspector
a resident of another community
on Feb 26, 2009 at 4:00 pm

California Health Code section 114259.5 expressly prohibits dogs and other animals from dining areas, inside or out. Unless they're guide dogs or police service dogs, it's illegal. I'll be watching...

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 26, 2009 at 5:41 pm

Funny how one thing leads to another . . . and the original thread of this conversation has literally gone to the dogs!

Any more thoughts out there about the initial question regarding a market and/or carry out eatery on Railroad Ave near the new Firehouse Arts Center? Still soliciting candid input.


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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Feb 26, 2009 at 9:39 pm

If you provide a food market, you are definitely going to have to combine it with something else. Pleasanton used to have a "high-end" small grocer on Main St. and that didn't last too long. They were too expensive anyway.

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Posted by resident
a resident of Downtown
on Feb 28, 2009 at 10:33 am

You go county health inspector! I have had it with people who think that I want to see, hear and smell their dogs while picking dog hair from my food. I will turn in ANY restaurant downtown that allows dogs (other than licensed service dogs) to come near my food. It is not that I do not like dogs, I do, but they have their own place which is not in stores, restaurants or the farmer's market.

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Posted by M
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Feb 28, 2009 at 1:49 pm

I would love an Italian Deli/Market in Pleasanton. Maybe you can have a little of that with a nice counter with fresh salads/meats/cheeses, some prepared foods, great take away, etc. I love your idea and look forward to it coming to fruition! Good Luck

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Posted by Anne
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Mar 1, 2009 at 11:10 am

I think parking would be a big issue for a Whole Foods type of market in downtown. I think a more appropriate spot for that is at Bernal and Vineyard Ave. But I think I would like to see a small authentic Italian restaurant or California Pizza, or Pita sandwich/gyro type of restaurant in downtown. We like to grab something quick before/after an Amador Valley sporting event, too. We would appreciate some new "healthy" choices.

To County Health Inspector:
Keep an eye-out at The Cheescake Factory in Pleasanton. My sister and I were eating there in January when a woman walked in with a chihuahua in a "doggy stroller" and walked past our table and straight back to the restroom! I was so shocked! I was certain that this woman must have rushed past the front desk and they missed seeing her. I alerted a waitress and informed them (I was certain that there were health codes in violation) and she said she would take care of it. She came back and said that "this lady was a regular customer who only comes in to pick up take-out food". I went one step further and asked to speak to a manager who also repeated the above. I told him I was sure he was in violation of health codes. (I will keep that information handy to sight in the future!) a I am a small dog owner myself but I would never think to bring my dog inside a restaurant. Even a grocery store will stop you from bringing in your small dog in the shopping cart. Unbelievable!!
My frustration was finding a phone number to report the restaurant.

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Posted by dancer
a resident of Amador Estates
on Mar 4, 2009 at 5:35 pm

We do NOT need MORE places to EAT in this town!!
We need a CLASSY place to go to Ballroom dance!!!

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Posted by indcredulous Irish
a resident of Downtown
on Mar 4, 2009 at 5:43 pm

To "M" You said: I would love an Italian Deli/Market in Pleasanton. Maybe you can have a little of that with a nice counter with fresh salads/meats/cheeses, some prepared foods, great take away, etc.

What on earth do you think that Gimanelli's Delicatessen & Catering is!? It's a fantastic little Italian deli with a variety of sandwiches, homemade soups!??!!? Helloooooo, been here long?!!? They sure have been!!! WAAAAAKE UP!!!! !

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Posted by dog lover
a resident of Downtown
on Mar 4, 2009 at 5:53 pm

We SHOULD be allowed to eat in the park with our leashed dogs! One thing we do not need is more law enforcers with nothing to do around here than harass the good citizens of Pleasanton.
I do not own a dog, but I love them, and owners should be able to come downtown with their well behaved 'friends' (Some peoples children should be leashed!) and eat in the park!

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Posted by 9grand
a resident of Birdland
on Apr 3, 2009 at 9:42 pm

Whole Foods sounds good but the City will never let a large store like that in downtown--we need something like CPK, Me and My (spelling) a Good Mexican Restaurant, a salad bar cafe--Howa bout a Chow? Even an Olive Garden would be good and reasonable for families

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