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Nite on the Town Restaurant Discount Card, image and link

The Nite On The Town Card is an exclusive membership card that enables the holder to dine at a dizzying variety of the San Gabriel Valley's most popular restaurants at a discounted price.

Simply include your card when paying your check. If you are a party of two, one of your entrees (equal or lower priced) will be free or substantially reduced in price. If there are four or more in your party, two of your entrees will be free or reduced in price and you can visit each restaurant up to three times during 2011 and get a great discount each time

Periodically, SanGabrielValleyMenus.com readers save $5 off the $30 price of the card.  Check back for savings.

Partial list of NOTT Card participants

Beckham Grill, La Fiesta Grande, El Portal, Stoney Point, Radhika, Firefly Bistro, Cafe Mundial, Central Park, Matt Denny's, 1810, Cha Da Thai, Dish, Italian Kitchen, Bella Sera and dozens more. 

Click here to view the complete list, and to see the discount each restaurant offers to Nite On The Town Card holders.

Nite on the Town Restaurant Discount Card, image and link

Restaurant Reviews  Click on photos (except logo) to see them full-size

You can also find our Dot Com Dining columns weekly in the San Gabriel Valley Weekly (print media), Mountain Views Newspaper (print media and online), and SierraMadreNews.Net (online)

DOT COM DINING A Look At San Gabriel Valley Restaurants by SanGabrielValleyMenus.com

                                    

Support Your Local Restaurants, While They’re Still Here

 

By Bill Coburn

 

One of the things I’ve observed since I began doing the SanGabrielValleyMenus.com website, is that when it comes time for annual renewal, I have a pretty good response.  In fact, most restaurants renew, unless they go out of business.  And there are a lot of restaurants that go out of business.  And that’s the subject of this week’s column.

 

It seems like lately, we’ve lost (or will soon lose) a lot of good, longtime restaurants.  A while back, El Encanto in Azusa closed.  Peppertree Grill in Sierra Madre also closed a few months back. I’ve just found out that Fuddrucker’s in Pasadena is closed.  In a week or two, Anthony’s Deli/Possemato’s Fine Gourmet/Posse’s Sports Bar in Arcadia will be closing.  Last Friday, I went to closing night at Soda Jerks in Pasadena.  The City of Arcadia has just approved plans for a Walgreens that could lead to the closure of Shakey’s Pizza and Noda, on Foothill Blvd. I’ve been told by the owner of a restaurant that’s been in Pasadena for 50+ years that he will probably be closing early next year.

 

These restaurants didn’t all close for the same reason.  Fuddrucker’s was, I’m sure, a corporate decision.  Anthony’s and Peppertree Grill sold to owners who had different restaurants in mind, El Encanto just closed.  But one thing is for sure, once they are gone, they will just be a pleasant memory, that you’ll never be able to re-live.  Well, except for Soda Jerks, which closed due to partnership issues, and plans to re-open again somewhere down the road (they’ve assured me they’ll let me know when and where, and I’ll tell you when I know).

 

At the moment, I work part time at Posse’s/Anthony’s Deli.  Business has been down for the last several months, and the owner decided to accept an offer from a buyer who will be turning it into a Chinese restaurant called Arcadia Tasty Garden.  Customers have been unanimous in stating that they hate to see Anthony’s/Possemato’s go.  Many of them have expressed their surprise, because “this place is always so busy…it’s been here for years…I always come here” etc.  But in some cases these same people who “always come here” didn’t know that the Federico’s Bakery part of the restaurant has been gone for more than a year.  I guess “always” is a relative term.

 

I believe that the changing demographics in Arcadia, coupled with the decision some time back to have Baldwin Ave. stores move their “fronts” to the parking lot behind them, drastically reducing Baldwin Ave. foot traffic, have been major factors in the changing business fortunes at Anthony’s.  In the old days, as people left Hinshaw’s, or JC Penneys, and went to their car on Baldwin Ave. they’d look across the street and see the sign for Anthony’s and say, hey, let’s go get a quick sandwich, or pizza.  Now, as they leave Burlington Coat Factory, they go straight to their car in the parking lot away from the street, and turn left on Baldwin at Duarte and never even see Anthony’s.  And that’s too bad, because Anthony’s still has really good food, and Possemato’s still has really good “gourmet” Italian food, and Posse’s has really good appetizers/burgers/dogs and 7 TVs on which to watch 7 NFL football games at the same time.  But only for a short time longer, you better get there quick if you want to enjoy it one last time.

 

The owner of the restaurant in Pasadena that will be closing told me that he just isn’t in a position to compete with the marketing budgets of the corporate restaurants, such as Red Lobster, Olive Garden, etc.  He likened it to the hardware business, noting that the Mom and Pop, individually owned, hardware stores have pretty much disappeared from the landscape, as Home Depot, OSH, and Lowe’s , with their mass buying power and subsequent lower prices, coupled with large advertising budgets, have pretty much taken over the industry.  He is concerned that we will see the same thing happening in the restaurant industry, with individually owned restaurants like his being driven out of business by the larger chains.

 

While I happen to believe that the restaurant industry will continue to have Mom and Pop stores for years to come, and new restaurants will pop up wherever there’s a good location, and a dreamer with some cooking skills, I do want to encourage all of you to take a few moments to think about your favorite long time places to eat, and to support them.  Don’t take these longstanding restaurants for granted.  Just because it’s been there “forever” doesn’t mean it’s always going to be.  Especially if its customers get out of the habit of dining there.  It’s you, the diners, and your dollars, that keep the good restaurants open.

 

So this weekend as you decide where to go for lunch or dinner, why not pick out an old favorite that you haven’t been to in a while, and stop by to see how things are going.  You might help to keep it around a little longer.  And even if you don’t, you’ll have another, more recent, memory of a place you used to enjoy.

 

Bill Coburn is owner of SanGabrielValleyMenus.com, a restaurant website featuring more than 150 restaurant menus, as well as downloadable coupons.  He has nearly 20 years experience in the restaurant business, and has been eating for much longer than that.

 

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