Food Connection opens third location

At the end of last year, I mentioned that the former Bob’s Big Boy in Colton was being transformed into a Food Connection.

Reader Steve wrote, letting us know that a Food Connection was also moving into a former Sizzler location in Norco, at 1750 Hamner Ave., competing with a Polly’s Pies, which is right across the street.

Well, this week I finally made it out to Norco to check and…they’re already open!

That will make the Colton Food Connection their fourth location when it opens.

Iron Chef, Roberto’s close up shop

In last week’s Dine 909 column, I mentioned that long-time Highland restaurant Roberto’s Pizza and Italian Dining, 3669 Highland Ave., is “closed until further notice.” A reader had emailed us of the closure.

Following up on another email, from reader Shawn, I went by the Iron Chef Cafe, 4275 E. Concours Drive., #30, Ontario, this week to discover it too, has closed.

The reader noted that they began a “kitchen remodel” back in October and never re-opened.

A red do-not-enter sign was displayed in the front door.

The Chinese/Japanese restaurant opened at the end of 2008.

Seasons Restaurant is worth seeking out

Here’s one San Bernardino eatery you probably never heard of: Seasons Restaurant.

It’s run by the International Culinary School at the Art Institute of California, Inland Empire, and it’s definitely worth a visit.

The hours are limited. They’re open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday through Wednesday and for dinner from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday.

A couple of weeks back I had lunch there courtesy of KVCR-TV’s Out to Eat host Cliff Young.

Cliff invited a select group of other Inland Empire foodies to sample Seasons’ cuisine.

I must say I was impressed with both the food and the service provided by the students and faculty.
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Watch a commercial, get free Chipotle

Chipotle Mexican Grill wants to give you a free burrito, bowl, tacos or salad.

All you have to do is watch a minute-and-a-half promo for NBC’s “America’s Next Great Restaurant,” which premieres at 8 p.m. March 6.

After viewing the video, you’ll be able to print a buy-one-get-one-free coupon, which expires a week from the viewing.

The connection? Chipotle founder, co-CEO and chairman Steve Ells, is on the judging and investment panel of the show, along with Lorena Garcia, Curtis Stone and Bobby Flay.

The promotion ends March 6.

Chipotle locations can be found throughout the Inland Empire.

Click here to get started.

Wienerschnitzel tweets and teases

Wienerschnitzel, which is in the midst of its 50th anniversary celebration and is currently offering 79 small soft serve cones and your choice of five chili burgers or five chili dogs (or any combination thereof) for only $5, has teased us via Twitter with their latest promotion, which will be unveiled in a few days:

Hey fans! Thanks for supporting us for 50 years! We have a new 50th
anniversary limited time promotion launching on Feb 27… Stay tuned!

Hmmm…what will it be?

50 hot dogs? $2 chili dog combos?

We’ll just have to wait until Sunday to find out.

Mimi’s hosts fundraiser for Inland Valley Hope Partners

Inland Valley Hope Partners, which helps people in need by providing food, shelter and supportive services, is teaming up with Mimi’s Cafe, 370 N. Mountain Ave., in Upland for a fundraiser from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m Monday (February 28).

The restaurant will donate 15% of your check to Inland Valley Hope Partners when you present this flier when you dine on Monday.

You were planning to go to Mimi’s on Monday anyway, right?

Inland Valley Hope Partners serves Chino, Chino Hills, Claremont, Diamond Bar, La Verne, Montclair, Mt. Baldy, Ontario, Pomona, Rancho Cucamonga, San Dimas, Upland and Walnut.

They serve around 75,000 men, women and children annually.

They operate four food banks (in Ontario, Pomona, Claremont and San Dimas) and a family residential shelter.

They sponsor the Pomona Valley Certified Farmers’ Market.

So, yes, the funds raised will be put to good use. Bring the whole family, and don”t forget the flier!

Qdoba ♥ Inland Empire

Qdoba Mexican Grill is offering a special deal for us Inland Empirions.

Today (February 24) and tomorrow (February 25) after 5 p.m. (the deal actually started last night), you can score a regular entre and a regular drink for only $5 with this coupon. (Note: You don’t have to print out the coupon…you can just show it on your cell phone.)

For $5, you’d only get a sandwich at some places.

And don’t forget their Mexican Gumbo contest, which ends March 6.

The deal is only good at the following Qdoba locations:

  • 9990 Alabama St., Suite C, Redlands
  • 1902 N. Campus Ave., Suite A, Upland
  • 2200 S. Grove Ave., Ontario
  • 12510 Day St., Suite A-3, Moreno Valley
  • 1430 Mountain Avenue, Suite 101, Duarte

Free pancakes! Free pancakes! Free pancakes!

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A tradition begun in 2006, International House of Pancakes’ National Pancake Day celebration is a fundraiser for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and other local charities.

The concept is simple: In exchange for a free short stack of pancakes, IHOP hopes you’ll give a donation for the charities.

This year’s celebration will be from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m on Tuesday (March 1).

Last year, IHOP raised over $2.1 million, with a total of $5.35 million raised since 2006.

This year’s goal is $2.3 million.

Will you help them reach that goal…and make your tummy happy at the same time?

Today’s Tommy Tuesday is in Barstow

Heading to or from Vegas today?

Or do you live in the High Desert?

Then you’ll want to stop by the Original Tommy’s in Barstow, because today’s Tommy Tuesday is taking place there.

That’s right. You can stop and pick up a chiliburger (or three) for only 65 each today.

All you have to do is utter the secret word: Family.

You can buy up to five chiliburgers at that special, 65th Anniversary price, until 10 p.m. today (February 22) only.

I know a certain nurse who might want to leave for work early and pick up some chiliburgers on his way to the Barstow Community Hospital E.R.

The Barstow Original Tommy’s is at 2610 Fisher Blvd.

The promotion is being shared with the Las Vegas Original Tommy’s at 5208 Boulder Highway.

Suite 106 Cupcakery serves up some “Love”

The Food Network “Cupcake Wars”-winning sisters who run Suite 106 Cupcakery in Rancho Cucamonga are showing quite a bit of heart this Valentine’s month.

For the month of February, Christy and Rebecca Grammer have been giving a portion of the profits from their winning cupcake flavor, Christy’s Southern Red Velvet, to three Inland Empire mothers who have struggled with healthcare costs.

The sisters have dubbed the fundraiser, “Operation Love.”

“Our mother taught us that the ‘True Art of Baking is with Love,’ while our father instilled in us that ‘The Key to Success is Generosity,’” explains Christy.

The recipients’ medical ailments and routes of treatment vary:

  • Kai Glasco is a 33-year-old Rancho Cucamonga mother who was diagnosed last year with multiple sclerosis while in the third trimester of her pregnancy. She has opted for a route of natural and holistic healing techniques that address her diet and cervical care. Glasco is the founder of “Our Women Aware Foundation,” whose mission is to allow single women of childbearing age the support and or informational resources pertaining to multiple sclerosis.
  • Jonetta Weicks of Victorville was also pregnant when diagnosed with colon and liver cancer last year. She is currently undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
  • Shana Hicks is afflicted with Von Hippel-Lindau disease (VHL) a genetic condition involving the abnormal growth of blood vessels. With five brain tumors, Hicks has undergone a half dozen neurosurgical procedures to date.

Suite 106 Cupcakery has committed to make “Operation Love” an annual February initiative to raise funds and awareness towards local women’s health care.

The good news is that there is still time for you to help. The month isn’t over yet.

Head on over to Suite 106 Cupcakery, 12434 North Main Street, in Rancho Cucamonga’s Victoria Gardens and pick up some of their Christy’s Southern Red Velvet cupcakes.

If you would like to have a more direct impact on the lives of the “Operation Love” recipients, please click this link to visit the Suite 106 Cupcakery blog, which gives complete donation information.