Tag Archives: Sushi Garden

Christmas shopping: last minute restaurant gift card bonuses

Photo caption: Sushi Garden is offering discount gift cards this holiday season

Two weeks ago I posted this article with eight different “gift card bonus offers” from Santa Cruz and Capitola restaurants. Here are a few more for any of you doing very-last-minute shopping.


Capitola, Scotts Valley and Watsonville

Sushi Garden is offering 10% off if you purchase at least $50 worth of gift certificates. You have to buy them by Dec. 24, and they’re valid at all three locations: Capitola (820 Bay Ave.), Scotts Valley (5600 Scotts Valley Dr.) and Watsonville (1441 Main St.).Visit sushi-garden.com.


Capitola, Scotts Valley and Santa Cruz

Jamba Juice is offering a gift card deal this holiday season, through Christmas. If you buy $25 in gift cards, you get a $5 bonus card redeemable in January and February. For more information, visit jambajuice.com. Local stores include Capitola (3555 Clares St.), Santa Cruz (1550 Pacific Ave.), and Scotts Valley (214 Mt. Hermon Rd.).


Santa Cruz

At Blaze Pizza (1901 Mission St.), if you buy a $25 gift card by Dec. 31, you get a free pizza reward to use at in 2019 (Jan. 1-Feb. 28). Restrictions: You must be a Blaze Rewards member (but it’s easy to sign up). For more information, visit blazepizza.com/locations/santa-cruz.


And finally, even though it’s not food-related, I have to mention Bookshop Santa Cruz because it’s such a wonderful, independent resource—and it’s been so for more than 50 years! Through the holiday season, you receive a free $10 BSC gift card when you purchase four $25 gift cards, or a free $5 gift card when you purchase five $10 gift cards. Speaking of food, your gift recipients (or you!) can buy a cookbook or a different type of food book (Ruth Reichl’s Comfort me With Apples…Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential, etc.). Visit bookshopsantacruz.com.


Best wishes for a great 2019!

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Santa Cruz and nearby restaurant news highlights, Part 1 of 2

Dinner at Santa Cruz's Mozaic Mediterranean Restaurant

Dinner at Santa Cruz’s Mozaic Mediterranean Restaurant

Here is some restaurant news for Santa Cruz and other local areas. I haven’t published a roundup of restaurant news since June, so there’s a lot of information to share. I’ll be publishing part two in the next few days. I also wanted to remind my readers: if you have any food/restaurant/wine/culinary event news to share, please email me at tfatemi@gmail.com.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries opened a Capitola location in November, in the old Carl’s Jr. spot at Capitola Mall (1855 41st Ave.). Hours are 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. and you can reach the restaurant at (831) 475-1948. There are hundreds of Five Guys locations in the U.S., including approximately 100 in California. A Santa Cruz location is opening soon at 1101 Pacific Ave. in the old Taqueria Vallarta spot next to Mission Hill Creamery.

Mozaic Mediterranean Restaurant opened in downtown Santa Cruz in August. I went the second day it opened; read my recap. I’ve been back many times since then and enjoyed more dishes such as the fun and tasty flaming cheese appetizer. Last time I split the grilled octopus appetizer with my sister and it was heavenly (a colleague of mine had recommended it, saying she has extremely high octopus standards and it’s the best she’s had in a long, long time). It’s very rich so I advise splitting it with at least one other person. Mozaic is at 110 Church St. off Pacific in the former Louie’s Cajun Grill location, (831) 454-8663. Hours are 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun-Thurs and 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri-Sat.

Steel Bonnet Brewing Company opened in Scotts Valley in October. The family-owned-and-operated brewery produces small batches of craft beer in various styles such as stout and IPA. They usually have about seven beers on tap. Steel Bonnet is at 20 Victor Square, (831) 454-8429. They’re open from 4-8 p.m. Mon-Fri and 1-8 p.m. Sat-Sun.

Café Hanna opened in Scotts Valley in June. Husband-and-wife owners Adbeen and Jamie Karam serve what they call Greek fusion; selections include falafel sandwiches and spanakopita. According to the restaurant’s web site, all sauces and dressings are made in-house, including an olive oil-based hot pepper sauce. Falafel fritters are made from scratch with ground garbanzo beans and several dishes use the restaurant’s housemade yogurt. Café Hanna is at 5272 Scotts Valley Dr., (831) 708-8845. It’s open from 11 a.m. -7 p.m. Mon-Fri (closed Sat-Sun).

Sushi Garden opened its third location in Scotts Valley in August. The other restaurants are in Capitola and Watsonville.  The newest location is at 5600 Scotts Valley Dr. where Yamamori used to be. Hours are 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5-9:30 p.m. daily. You can contact them at (831) 438-9260.

Mandarin Gourmet opened in downtown Santa Cruz in October, in the old Little Shanghai location at 1010 Cedar St., (831) 458-2460. It’s open from 11 a.m. -9:30 p.m. Mon-Sat and 5-9 p.m. Sun.

Starbucks opened a new Santa Cruz location in October. It’s located at 21620 E Cliff Dr. Hours are 5 a.m. -10 p.m. Sun-Thurs and 5 a.m. – 10:30 p.m. Fri-Sat.

Opening in the Future
The Bywater, from Santa Cruz resident David Kinch (owner/chef at Michelin-starred Manresa), will open in Los Gatos in January. Read my preview article.

Taqueria Vallarta at 1101 Pacific Ave. closed in October; the restaurant still has four locations (three in Santa Cruz and one in Felton).

Yamamori Sushi & Grill in Scotts Valley closed during the summer.

Little Shanghai closed at the end of June.


Lúpulo Craft Beer House expanded in October. Their new space includes a second dining room, which the existing bar wraps into, as well as a “pub” room in the back equipped with two large screen TVs, shuffleboard, and a stand up-piano for “Pianoman” nights. These rooms added extra seating for Lúpulo, plus there are now spaces available for private parties and meetings. Lúpulo’s menu remains the same: the food is a seasonal rotation of tapas and other selections designed for sharing, while the beer is 16 constantly rotating taps.

Santa Cruz Food Lounge: some pop-up tenants have changed schedules, or plan to in the near future. See below.
Ty’s Eatery: although they no longer offer pop-up dinner Wednesdays, they serve pop-up brunch every Sunday from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
LionFish SupperClub: they now serve pop-up dinner every Tuesday from 5-9p.m. (they used to only serve it every 2 weeks)
Mortal Dumpling: the Monday night pop-up dinner (5:30-9p.m.) will stop at the end of December

Follow me on Twitter @santacruzfoodie.

Restaurants for Father’s Day 2011 in Santa Cruz and nearby

An example of the delicious food found at Johnny's Harborside

Father’s Day is a great time to enjoy a meal at one of your favorite restaurants, and many restaurants in Santa Cruz and nearby will feature special menus for the occasion.

Silver Spur

Santa Cruz restaurant Silver Spur serves fabulous comfort food for breakfast and lunch and is normally not open on Sundays (much to the disappointment of myself and its many fans, who stand in line on Saturdays for a spot). But Silver Spur is open this Sunday from 8am-2pm to honor Father’s Day. It will offer its regular menu – including great scrambles made with eggs or tofu and decadent cinnamon rolls – plus specials. Call 475-2725 for more information (they don’t take reservations).

650 Soquel Drive, Santa Cruz

Johnny’s Harborside

On Father’s Day, Johnny’s will serve its regular brunch menu with a beautiful view, plus brunch specials from 10am-2pm, followed by its regular dinner menu plus dinner specials from 2-9pm. Brunch specials are Dungeness Crab Omelet ($13) and Smoked Steelhead Benedict with BBQ Hollandaise ($13); dinner specials are Cumin-Spiced Wild King Salmon with Sautéed Summer Vegetables & Caramelized Onion Risotto ($26) and Surf & Turf with Braveheart Ribeye & Grilled Giant Spot Prawns plus Sautéed Summer Vegetables, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, and Garlic Bread ($29). Call 479-3430 for reservations.

493 Lake Avenue, Santa Cruz

Sushi Garden

On Father’s Day, Sushi Garden is serving lunch (11:30-2:30) and dinner (5-9:30) at both its Capitola and Watsonville locations. And customers can get one free roll if they bring a coupon from this week’s Good Times (p. 26) and make a lunch order for $20 or more or a dinner order for $40 or more. Recommended: the restaurant’s generous and tender maguro sashimi.

820 Bay Avenue, Capitola (across from Nob Hill), (831) 464-9192

1441 Main St., Watsonville (Target Shopping Center), (831) 728-9192

Bittersweet Bistro

Aptos restaurant Bittersweet Bistro is offering several steak specials in honor of Dad. Starting at 5pm, customers can choose a $15 Filet Mignon, Skirt Steak, Rib Eye, or New York Steak. Bittersweet is also serving $15 bottles of Kenwood “Yulupa” Cabernet Sauvignon during this time. Call (831) 662-9799 for reservations.

787 Rio Del Mar Boulevard, Aptos


Hindquarter Bar & Grille

Hindquarter is open on Father’s Day for both brunch/lunch and dinner (in case you hadn’t heard, the restaurant is now open every Sunday for brunch beginning at 10:30am). For Father’s Day, Hindquarter will be serving its regular menu plus Father’s Day specials. Brunch/lunch is served from 10:30am-2:30pm and dinner service begins at 5:30pm. Call (831) 426-7770 for reservations.

303 Soquel Avenue, Santa Cruz

Ideal Bar & Grill

Ideal Bar & Grill offers its regular menu plus Father’s Day brunch specials including Chorizo Omelet ($14), Sirloin & Eggs ($14, with an 8oz. choice sirloin cut), and Pork Salad ($16). The restaurant opens at 8:30am this Sunday, and dinner begins at 4pm. Call (831) 423-5271 for reservations.

106 Beach St., Santa Cruz

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Where to go on Mother’s Day in Santa Cruz and nearby: Restaurants part 2

Deep-fried ravioli appetizer at Ristorante Italiano

Dining out on Mother’s Day is a fun way to honor a great mom, and Santa Cruz has many restaurants offering special menus this Sunday. See Part 1 for more restaurants in the Santa Cruz area, one in Half Moon Bay and one in Glen Ellen, and see below for the second and final group of restaurants I am highlighting. Happy Mother’s Day!

Crow’s Nest

The Santa Cruz harbor restaurant with a great ocean view, always a bonus for special occasions, will be serving a special Mother’s Day brunch on Sunday. Call (831) 476-4560 for reservations. 2218 East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz

Ristorante Italiano

Ristorante Italiano is serving Mother’s Day dinner beginning at 4pm on Sunday. The restaurant is offering a free tiramisu with dinner. Call (831) 458-2321 for reservations.

555 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz

Hindquarter Bar & Grille

Hindquarter will be offering brunch on Sunday. From 10:30am-2:30pm, the restaurant will be serving its regular lunch menu plus a few Mother’s Day specials. Hindquarter will be serving its regular dinner menu from 5:30pm plus it will have dinner and dessert specials for Mother’s Day. Call (831) 426-7770 for reservations.303 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz

Bittersweet Bistro

Aptos restaurant Bittersweet Bistro is serving Mother’s Day champagne brunch from 9am-2pm. The buffet includes Strawberry-Chipotle Glazed King Salmon, Greek Style Roasted Leg of Spring Lamb, Bourbon Glazed Corralitos Ham, Bittersweet Grand Marnier French Toast, Classic Eggs Benedict, Made to Order Omelets, Housemade Scones, Croissants & Muffins, Beet Salad, and Tomato Mozzarella Salad – plus a dessert extravaganza including chocolate fountains. There will be a special kids’ table with Grilled Cheese, PB & J Sandwiches, Chicken Fingers and Cookies. The price is $52 Adults, $18 Children 6-12, and $5 Kids Five and Under. For the 9:00 a.m. seating only, receive a $10 discount per adult. Call (831) 662-9799 for reservations.

787 Rio Del Mar Boulevard, Aptos

Sushi Garden

If you plan to go to Sushi Garden for Mother’s Day lunch or dinner, be sure to pick up this week’s Good Times. On page 26 there’s a coupon for a free roll on Mother’s Day, good on lunch orders of $20 or more and dinner orders of $40 or more. It’s good at both locations.

820 Bay Ave., Capitola, (831) 464-9192 and 1441 Main St, Watsonville, (831) 728-9192


The Chaminade offers its annual Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet from 9am-3pm; the price is $49.95 (adults), $17.95 (kids 6-12), and free for kids under 6. Call (831) 475-5600 for reservations.

One Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz

The Point Chophouse & Lounge

Mother’s Day brunch specials include candied walnut waffles ($9), Monterey Bay Eggs Benedict ($14), and $4 bloody marys and mimosas. Brunch is from 9am-3pm; call (831) 476-2733.

3326 Portola Dr., Santa Cruz

Whole Foods Santa Cruz

The supermarket’s Santa Cruz location offers Mother’s Day Brunch on Sunday from 10am-noon. Breakfast foods like cage-free eggs, fresh pastries and more will be available for $2 each. And Moms get free coffee from 8am-noon on Mother’s Day! Call (831) 426-9901 for more information.

911 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz


Hoffman’s, located in downtown Santa Cruz, is serving Mother’s Day brunch and dinner. The restaurant is featuring its regular menus plus specials during both meals. Call (831) 420-0135 for reservations.

1102 Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz

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