The neighborhood that until last summer didn't even have an official name is beginning to heat up. The latest newcomer to put down roots in the area, which is mushrooming with new offices, condos and hotels, is Stella's on 16th, opening this Friday, January 27.
Owners Brian and Dawn "Stella" Cohen will unveil their all-day restaurant, cafe and market on the ground floor of the Triangle Building at 1550 Wewatta Street, where they will offer breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week, as well as take-home meals, grab-and-go sandwiches and salads, and a small selection of grocery items for home cooks.
The Cohens hired executive chef Thach Tran, most recently of Uncle Joe's Hong Kong Bistro, to run the kitchen at Stella's; his menu offers the kind of variety that works well in an urban market setting: house-made pastries and other portable items to go with coffee on the run; hot and cold sandwiches and big salads for lunch; and heartier dinner fare to eat in the restaurant's triangular dining room or to take home. Housemade deli meats like porchetta, pastrami and roast beef will fatten sandwiches, while homey bites from the Cohen family's recipes will invite lingering over a newspaper and drinks. For Sunday brunch, expect buttermilk pancakes like Stella Cohen remembers from her Grandma Jean, and look for tastes of the Cohen's home town of Chicago, such as an Italian beef sandwich.
Stella's on 16th will showcase local purveyors to fill in the menu: bagels from Rosenberg's, breads from Hinman's Bakery, beef from 7X Ranch, and sausage from Polidori. But with plenty of space for both a kitchen and a bakery, most of the fare will come from Stella's own crew.
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The restaurant will be primarily counter service, with a number of point-of-sale systems at the bar, deli counter and bakery, where customers will be able to order food to eat there or take home. But during dinner service, waitstaff will be on hand in the dining room to take additional food and drink orders, making multiple payments and trips to the counter unnecessary.
Stella's will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.