Cal Shabu * Santa Monica

The Inception of a "Japanese" restaurant

Archive for the month “October, 2011”

The Finishing Touches… All 563 of them!!!

So the many empty promises of an opening date have come and gone time and again… and we’re still here, toiling away to pull this mess called our shabu construction site together. So so soo sorry!! Believe us, our rent bill looks dismal without any income. It looked more complete a couple days ago, but as we go through the layout with a fine tooth comb, little alterations are needed in virtually every nook and cranny. We find out that we’ve completely designed some things backwards, not to mention the countless extra dollars spent on sustaining our fickle-minded changes. On a more positive note! We are days away from finally being open. No date set now, but we’re definitely serving some shabu up on Sunday for our ever so patient friends and family as a test run for us and our servers to make sure everything we’ve tweaked will lead us forward towards our “real” grand opening date.  Sunday will be an invite only for friends and family event, possibly cash only, with our intended grand opening the following Sunday on November 6th. Depending on the additional work that may need to be completed, we will most likely close again to complete work Monday and Tuesday (Oct. 31 and Nov. 1).  We need to make sure that we can accept credit cards with our new computer, otherwise it will be a cash day only this Sunday. Good news for our patient supporters and neighbors ! We are pushing for Wednesday / Thursday (November 2 and 3) for our soft opening for the public. So if you happen to be hungry and in the neighborhood towards the end of the week we hope to finally see you all there! Final updates to come, but for now we’ll leave you with some pics of one of our many car-packed trips from the restaurant supply store, and our Cal Shabu fixie!

We also just wanted to sincerely thank everyone for their support and patience with our new build. All of our existing customers have been ever-loyal, even our servers have hung around for the extra and unexpected 2 month delay! They all seem to just fit our Cal Shabu family. The local neighbors who have popped their heads in have all been awesome, and we just can’t wait to join the hood! Thank you is not enough, but its all we can say, so thank you to everyone supporting us. Please continue checking back, we will definitely update the website and blog as we lock down our dates. Arigato!

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Health Department Approved!! We can legally serve food now!

So we’ve finally done it! Here is our health permit that we’ve been trying to get for so long. Although we’re finally ready to open, there are still so many other things that we ran into problems with as well. We’re in final setup mode. The Point of Sale system has delayed us further since we’re attempting to adopt a new system which uses iPod Touchs for each server’s ordering. Thank you Steve Jobs! We didn’t think our menu was right, so we took a little more time to update the look and presentation, and these are going to print Monday. We’re still missing some art, but this will hopefully come this upcoming week as well. The security and music systems have to be installed as well. It looks so finished, yet still so far from it. I’ll have more updates later today. As of now, we’re looking at opening right around Halloween, Sunday or Monday. Thank you for bearing with us and our ridiculous delays. We promise we’ll make it worthwhile!

Thank you inspector…

One of the days that we’ve been waiting for, for so long , has finally come. Our inspector Jim has finally passed our project!! He was awesome throughout the build, so a big thank you for all the help.

Now its crunch time. Organize, setup, organize… we’re so close. Still lots of little details to take care of, but we’re looking good. Hopefully we’ll be open next weekend!!

 

Alcohol APPROVED!!!!

The day we’ve been waiting for! Well, at least one of the days we’ve been waiting for. Although we are still a few days away from our grand opening, at least we have our abc license, and we can start bothering all the distributors to start bringing us yummy samples of their sake, beer, shochu, whatever else they have…

This is the first time we’ve ever used a glycol cooling system to keep our beers cold, but damn! does it look good! Henry did a sweet job on running everything as squeaky clean as possible, and we have our 5 taps ready and waiting for some good head!

We know we’ve shown this shot so many times before, but this is truly the closest its ever been to being complete!

Last pieces of art are being completed, little details attended to, and pos system is actually going into the restaurant today! Fingers crossed, hopefully our new iTouch based server system will be revolutionary to our service efficiency. I’ll post the results later tonight. Wish us luck!

 

OMG Are we STILL building?!?!?!

Sincerest apologies for the unacceptable lapse in posting… So much has happened, so I’ll split this into a couple posts, and we don’t want to give away all the candy, so we’ll keep our art a secret for now. We’ve moved a few steps, still not there yet, but its actually looking insane!! We decided on tiling the back wall for a little NYC flavor, and so much nicer than the plastic panels were originally to adorn each and every service area wall. The place is seriously starting to look like a restaurant. We never thought this day would come!! We’re still waiting on a few approvals, but we’re getting ancy. New tee shirts just got delivered, plates and bowls finally completed their journeys from China, kitchen goods are starting to fill the storage racks, but our menus have yet to be printed, sake and beer selection still to be determined, beer pitchers, beer lines, keg rack, all things beer not installed yet, back bench seating supports were just sent out for powdercoating, and our art is still being painted!

IF all goes well in the next 2 weeks, we should be able to open our doors. Cannot wait to open our doors after a year and a half of red tape, drained bank accounts, and a mounting pile of hot steaming debt!

Not the final roof… Wasn’t happy with the color combos, so we’ve got something else special in store.

The one things we have that we’ve never had before is a cozy little back corner section… Experimentation is always so scary!!

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