Biz Buzz: A new place to chow down downtown

Robin Covey opened his new restaurant on Tuesday — Chow, at 1009 Monterey St. in San Luis Obispo.

The restaurant, co-owned by Covey and business partner Shanny Covey, will follow the pan-Asian, noodle-food style set by Chow Novo, the small establishment that Covey had opened briefly a couple of years ago on Palm Street as a temporary place for his customers to dine while his Novo restaurant on Higuera Street was undergoing seismic retrofitting.

The new Chow will have a blend of California-Chinese, Vietnamese and Korean cuisines, leaning toward lighter vegetable and noodle dishes and lots of ginger, garlic and chiles to spice the dishes up, Robin Covey said.

“I’ve always been interested in other cultures and plan to use a lot of fresh produce and food with bold, strong flavors,” he added.

The restaurant is hoping to cater to the Fremont theater crowd at night and those in the courthouse and County Government Center for lunch.

— Melanie Cleveland

SLO is part of worldwide firm

BFGC Architects Planners Inc., with offices in San Luis Obispo, Bakersfield and San Jose, recently merged with IBI Group, an international network of architecture and land planning firms headquartered in Toronto. The practice will continue with the name BFGC-IBI Group Architects Planners.

BFGC has practiced architecture and planning in California for 60 years. Before the merger, BFCG was composed of five associate principals, eight associates and a staff of 70. The merger will create a firm with approximately 2,285 people with 67 offices worldwide in cities such as Boston, New York, Vancouver, Beijing and Delhi, among others. The San Luis Obispo office is led by vice president and senior principal William Tuculet and principal Richard Mello.

— Julia Hickey