Hangar 24 one of best breweries to visit

Here’s something many in the Inland Empire (and beyond) already know.

The folks over at RateBeer.com merely just confirmed it: Hangar 24 Craft Brewery is one of the best breweries to visit.

The Redlands craft brewery has been ranked number 31 on RateBeer.com’s list of Best Breweries to Visit 2011.

Hangar 24 is the only Inland Empire brewery to make the list, which is composed mostly of U.S. breweries with a smattering of Canadian and Belgian breweries mixed in. (The top brewery to visit is Picobrouwerij Alvinne Den Bier – en Proefzolder in Heule, Belgium.)

Congratulations to Hangar 24!

And speaking of…tonight’s Cask Beer is their Alt-Bier with the addition of espresso from Augie’s Coffee House of Redlands. It’s available now until it’s gone.

Corky’s headed to Eastvale…but don’t hold your breath

Included in a press release listing several recent commercial real estate transactions was this little tidbit:


EASTVALE, CA – David Wick and Brandon Beauchemin of NAI Capital’s Ontario office represented the lessee, Overeasy, Inc., DBA Corky’s Kitchen and Bakery in the lease of a 4,393 square foot retail property located at 12552 Limonite Avenue, Suite 130, Eastvale from WLPX Eastvale, LLC.  Corky’s Kitchen and Bakery anticipates a Fall 2011 Grand Opening.   Value and terms of the lease were not disclosed.

That’s right, Eastvalians, Corky’s Kitchen and Bakery is headed your way, but you’ll likely have to wait until this fall to get your 24/7 dose of Hobo skillets and Messina burgers.

Until then, the Rancho Cucamonga and Rialto locations are just a short drive up the 15 and down either direction on the 210. Road trip!

Australia coming to Rancho Cucamonga

No, not the entire continent, but one of its “fast casual” restaurants.


Oporto, an Australian restaurant with more than 130 restaurants throughout Australia, New Zealand, U.K., and China, is opening its first U.S. location in…wait for it…Rancho Cucamonga.

I guess you probably figured that out from the headline above.

The restaurant will open a week from tomorrow (February 25).

Oporto’s claim to fame is Australian-style food with a Portuguese influence, serving chicken burgers, grilled chicken, “rappas” (wraps), salads and sides including “chips” (fries).

Oporto, not coincidentally, is also the name of Portugal’s second-largest city.

Oporto’s chicken is fresh (not frozen) and grilled (not fried).

Oporto is also known for its signature sauces including Lemon and Herb, BBQ, Prego and Chilli sauce, which is a flavorful and spicy Aussie-style piri-piri sauce.

Oporto also serves “brekkie,” including egg and chicken or Aussie-style bacon burgers served with barbecue sauce. Australian bacon is made from the pork shoulder and has a distinctive, leaner taste.

It appears that the menu will change little from the Australian restaurants.

The restaurant will be open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.

Two more locations, in Ontario and Glendora, are planned for later this year.

The Rancho Cucamonga Oporto is at 8220 Haven Ave., in the space formerly occupied by Pei Wei Asian Diner.

For more information, visit their U.S. website here or their Facebook page here.

Update: Business editor Rebecca U. Cho has written about Oporto’s opening for the business page. Read her article here.

Vote for your favorites

In case you haven’t seen the ballots in the newspaper, the 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards is upon us.

Of course, here at Dine 909, we’re mostly interested in the “Best Food & Drink” categories.

To cast your vote, you can either mail in the ballot that’s been printed in the paper, or vote online.

There are two different sets of awards to be given…one for The Sun and Redlands Daily Facts, and one for the Daily Bulletin.

To access the online ballots click your paper’s name below to begin:

Voting ends February 28, so don’t delay!

Girl Scouts out for blood

The Girl Scouts of San Gorgonio Council want your blood.

They’re teaming up with LifeStream to get it.

All blood donors on February 18, 19, 25 and 26 and March 4, 5, 11 and 12 at LifeStream donor centers in San Bernardino, Riverside, La Quinta and the High Desert will receive a free box of Girl Scout cookies, courtesy of the San Gorgonio Council.

Those who donate at the San Bernardino donor center on February 20 and 27, and March 6 and 13 will also receive a free box of cookies.

In addition, the offer will be extended to several mobile drives as well.

The offer is good while supplies last, naturally.

And if one box of cookies isn’t enough, troop members will be at the donor centers and mobile drives to sell you additional boxes.

Follow the jump for all the details.
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Just how much do you like Qdoba’s Mexican Gumbo?


Qdoba Mexican Grill is having a contest that’s custom-made for lovers of their Mexican Gumbo.

Through March 6, when you purchase a Mexican Gumbo meal ($5.99, includes a regular-size drink), you’ll be given some Qdoba Mardi Gras beads.

No flashing necessary.

Then, from 6 to 8 p.m. on March 7 (Fat Monday?), bring your bead collection to your favorite Qdoba restaurant to be counted.

The customer with the most beads gets a free entre a week for a year. Second place gets 20 free entres. Third place gets 10 free entres.

The prizes will be given away at each of Qdoba’s 11 Southern California locations.

The contest began last Wednesday (February 9), so you better hurry and catch up.

Qdoba has four Inland Empire 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

For more information, click here to go to the Qdoba SoCal Facebook page.

My Delight Cupcakery sweeps L.A. Cupcake Challenge

Congratulations go out to Ontario’s My Delight Cupcakery.

Liset Mrquez reports in the Ontario Now blog that the bakery recently swept all three categories in the L.A. Cupcake Challenge.

Their Red Velvet cupcake took top honors for Best Traditional cupcake, while their Late Night Breakfast (think chicken and waffles) cupcake claimed both Best Original and Best Overall categories.

The bakery will have a victory party from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday (February 20).

My Delight is at 1520 N. Mountain Ave., Suite B-108.

Click here to read the full post from Ontario Now.

Update: Liset has posted additional details on the victory party in Ontario Now. Click here to read more. Also, My Delight has created an event page for the party on Facebook. Click here to see it.

New in town: Red Buffalo and Wok N’ Grill

Two new restaurants have been spotted in San Bernardino recently.


First up is Red Buffalo, which advertises “Great taste, no bull” and offers hot wings, pastrami, steak sandwiches, burgers, chili fries, onion rings, zucchini, chicken wraps and serves breakfast all day.

I’m OK with breakfast all day.

Red Buffalo is in the old Swensen’s Ice Cream/Fosdick’s Grinders and Ice Cream spot at 2525 N. Del Rosa Ave.


Further south, offering an…um…interesting combination of Chinese and Mediterranean/Middle Eastern food, is Wok N’ Grill.

Really, where else can you get kung pao chicken and a gyro?

How about an egg roll with your chicken kabob?

The possibilities are endless.

Wok N’ Grill is in the long-vacant former El Pollo Loco location at 905 N. Waterman Ave.

Visit Wok N’ Grill’s Facebook page here.

Inland Empire adds four more Coca-Cola Freestyles

The Coca-Cola Freestyle continues its rollout here in the Inland Empire.

The 106-choice beverage fountain can now be found in four more locations since we last checked:

  • Cal Skate, 22080 Commerce Way, Grand Terrace
  • El Pollo Loco, 2720 Canyon Springs Parkway, Riverside
  • Lucky Greek, 2490 Wardlow Road, Corona
  • Stadium Pizza, 32278 Clinton Keith Road, Suite 101, Wildomar

Also, recently I was at two different restaurants that have the Freestyle machine and got to see the inner workings as they replaced some of the flavor cartridges inside.

It’s a pretty ingenious (and likely foolproof) procedure.

They wave the cartridge about halfway down the right side of the machine and it unlocks the door to the lower half. Inside are banks of cartridges, some with base flavors (Coke, Sprite, Barqs), and others with additive flavors (vanilla, strawberry, raspberry).

Green LEDs indicate cartridges that don’t need to be replaced. Red LEDs indicate cartridges which do need to be replaced. A blinking red LED indicates the cartridge you just used to open the door and need to replace.

Once the cartridge is replaced and the door is closed, a menu pops up on the touch screen prompting to flush the just-replaced cartridge. A quick squirt of water and everything is ready to go again.

Also, Coke has created a handy-dandy map of its current Freestyle locations. Follow the jump to see it.
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Ruben’s Fiesta Maya, Rockin’ Baja close

A couple of high-profile restaurant closures to report.

The first is the Montclair outlet of the Rockin’ Baja Coastal Cantina chain, which was at 9335 Monte Vista Ave., in the space long occupied by Tony Roma’s.

Rockin’ Baja opened back in December of 2008.

A sharp-eyed reader notified us via Twitter.

A drive-by on Tuesday verified the closure. The building was stripped of any signage and a piece of paper with the word “Closed” on it was taped on the inside of the window in one of the front doors.

A shorter-lived venture is Ruben’s Fiesta Maya in Redlands.
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