New deli provides frozen yogurt, lunch
A new frozen yogurt and lunch eatery, Chill Spot, has opened at 2706 N. Monroe, says co-owner Rick Purcell.
The 1,400-square-foot restaurant, which can seat 28 patrons, offers eight varieties of self-serve frozen yogurt at 39 cents per ounce, Purcell says. It also offers espresso and brewed coffee, and, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., it serves soups and panini sandwiches.
Monroe Street Deli & Espresso formerly occupied the leased space. Purcell says he and his wife, Jennifer Purcell, left the seating area intact, but gutted and remodeled the remainder of the building, at a cost of about $30,000.
Purcell worked as a food-service manager at Gonzaga University for five years, but most recently was in the real estate industry.
"I just hung up my license. It got a little depressing," he says. "I was looking for something happier, and I couldn't think of anything happier than frozen yogurt."
Purcell says the eatery has five part-time employees in addition to the owners.
Paul Bunyan opens fourth Idaho eatery
Paul Bunyan Restaurants LLC, of Post Falls, has opened an eatery at 30340 State Route 200, in Ponderay, just north of Sandpoint. Owner Scott Ovnicek says he bought the vacant 2,000-square-foot location at a U.S. Small Business Administration auction last summer after that agency had repossessed it.
The chain also has restaurants at 8625 N. Government Way, in Hayden; and 700 N. Idaho, in Post Falls. Paul Bunyan Pak-Out LLC, located at 602 Northwest Blvd., in Coeur d'Alene, is owned by Ovnicek's father, Robert Ovnicek. The chain serves hamburgers, chicken strips, fish and chips, onion rings, French fries, and 25 flavors of milkshakes. Altogether, it has about 50 employees, Ovnicek says.
He says his father purchased the original Coeur d'Alene restaurant in the 1980s. The younger Ovnicek opened the Hayden location in 1992, Post Falls in 1994, and the new Ponderay location at the beginning of November.
He declines to disclose the cost of remodeling the Ponderay restaurant building. He attributes the success of the chain through the recession to adjustments it made in response to the business climate.
"We made minor changes to the menu, increased our marketing, and we currently have a promotion of any burger for $1.99. The price point has brought in more business that helped matters out," Ovnicek says.
Computer recycler opens second store
Recycle Techs, of Spokane Valley, has expanded to a second location, at 3601 N. Nevada, on Spokane's North Side.
Owner Erik Bisiar says the expansion made sense for the business, because many of its customers were driving to Spokane Valley from the North Side.
Recycle Techs refurbishes used computers and resells them, and also repairs customers' computers. Bisiar says it dismantles computers and other office equipment it obtains that aren't repairable, and sells the components to the Washington Materials Management & Financing Authority, which recycles some materials extracted from the components and disposes of the rest according to U.S. Department of Ecology guidelines. He says about 50 percent of the business equipment and 20 percent of the residential equipment Recycle Tech takes in can be remanufactured.
The Valley store, at 12928 E. Indiana, is a 7,000-square-foot facility, and the new store gives the company an additional 3,000 square feet of space. Bisiar says Recycle Techs has five employees, including himself, and also unpaid interns from computer technician programs in Spokane-area vocational schools. He says he spent a year training a manager for the new location, but hasn't yet hired any additional employees.
New coffee shop offers dog washing
Barks & Beans, a new coffee shop equipped with self-service dog washing stations, has opened at 1314 S. Grand, on Spokane's South Hill, in a 1,200-square-foot space formerly occupied by a Great Clips outlet.
The coffee shop serves espresso, tea, sandwiches, muffins, and pastries. It has four dog-washing stations and one grooming station.
Owners Roger Villareal and Kimberly Brown spent two and a half months and $15,000 remodeling the space, Villareal says.
"We did a lot of the work ourselves. It was a lot of sweat equity," he says. Artistic Tile, of Spokane Valley, also was contracted for some of the remodeling, which included extensive plumbing additions, Villareal says.
The business charges customers $12 to wash their own dogs, which includes shampoo, conditioner, and use of towels, an apron, and a blow dryer. If Villareal does the dog washing, he charges $20 and up, depending on the size of the dog. A professional groomer is available.
Villareal formerly was co-owner of the Monterey Cafe downtown. Brown previously was a bartender at The Globe Bar & Grill downtown. The longtime friends also plan to open Barks & Beans locations on the North Side, in the Valley, and farther south on the South Hill if the current location does well. Villareal says they're considering offering beer and wine, and opening on Sundays in the summer months.
Barks & Beans has one barista in addition to Brown.
Specialty food shop opens on North Side
A new specialty food store named Petunias Marketplace has opened in a former rental house at 2010 N. Madison, in North Spokane.
Petunias Marketplace sells specialty food items such as barbecue spice rub mixes, sweet onion mustard, white truffle butter, vinegars, and fresh pesto made in its on-site commercial kitchen. Owner Stacy Blowers says it also recently obtained a license to sell beer and wine.
Blowers says she started a farmers market in Dallas six years ago, and moved here in 2007. For the past three years, she has been producing and selling food items at Spokane-area farmers markets.
"When I got here, I was happy to find niches that hadn't been explored a lot," Blowers says.
She says the business spent about $35,000 to remodel the 1,500-square-foot house. Now that Spokane-area farmers markets are closed for the winter, she says she plans to begin marketing the business aggressively. She says her goal is to create food items, without preservatives, from locally grown produce.
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