Kathleen Hill: Sonoma Delicious, winter closures and a note from Maria Viviani
Park 121 Café & Grill sold
Well known chef and caterer Bruce Riezenman has sold his Park 121 Café & Grill at Cornerstone south of Sonoma.
According to Riezenman, new owners Greg and Julianne Jones will call their version of the only restaurant at Cornerstone “Public Kitchen,” and Riezenman is under the impression the menu “will remain mostly the same. He also said the Joneses will have access to all of his recipes, and will take over in February with a new chef.
Riezenman continued, “I am excited to have fresh eyes on the restaurant and look forward to the positive changes that Greg and Julianne will bring. Park 121 and Cornerstone have given me an opportunity to get to know Sonoma better, and for that I am grateful.”
Riezenman says he’s had “a wonderful seven year run” and plans to focus his time now on Park Avenue Catering, located in Cotati.
Greg Jones has been a resident and businessman in Sonoma County for over 30 years, said Riezenman, having operated Coupons Galore and Best Values magazine, as well as the QZAR-ToobTown-Paradise Pizza family entertainment center in Rohnert Park, among other North Bay ventures.
Sonoma Delicious through January
Some Sonoma restaurants have partnered with California Restaurant Month, created to attract attention to California restaurants during slow January. This is not to be confused with Sonoma County Restaurant Week, which rolls into town March 1 through 10.
Some participating restaurants and what they offer through January includes:
La Salette’s three-course crab stew dinner for $49; the Girl & the Fig Wednesday night Ramen Nights at Suite D, two courses $15; Muscardini Cellars food and wine pairings on Saturdays and Sundays, $35 wine club members, $55 non-members; Ledson Winery & Vineyards offers two wine tastings for price of one; Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards hosts a crab boil with prawns, artichokes, potatoes, corn, hotlinks and sourdough baguettes on Jan. 28 to finish off the month for $135. And Gourmet Food & Wine Tours will give 20 percent off for their tours in January. Sonomavalley.com/delicious.
More from Sonoma Cheese Factory
After news broke in the Index-Tribune about Sonoma Cheese Factory’s decision to close for the winter, Maria Viviani emailed a passionate statement. It’s what you might read between the lines and paragraphs that could fill in the story. Here’s what she wrote:
“My sister and I are involved in every aspect regarding the business and our building. We have opted to hire store managers for the daily operations of the business and reserve our participation to high-level decisions. It is not the lack of leadership that has led us to the latest decision to close for the winter season, it’s the decrease in foot traffic and sales.
“We are just trying to survive in the wake of last year’s wild fires and the latest Paradise Fire. We look forward to a spring re-opening.
“I am not giving up hope that my sister and I will be able to realize our Dad’s dream of transforming our business into something new and exciting for our town.
“We are so lucky to have a partnership with (project developer) Steve Carlin.
“We are currently in a holding pattern with our plans, but I will let you know if anything changes in the coming months.”