San Luis Obispo restaurant Bon Temps Creole Cafe is moving from its longtime Olive Street location to a new space near Railroad Square.
Owner Phil Lang, who opened the popular Cajun cafe in 1995, is remodeling a new 2,500-square-foot location at 1819 Osos St., the former home of Lotus Asia’s Best, server Dawn Zavacky said.
She said Lang hopes to open the new spot in January and to remain open at 1000 Olive St., next to the Ramada hotel, until the move is complete so there’s no disruption in service for customers or employees. Zavacky said Lang’s 20-year lease was ending on Olive Street and he thought it would be a good opportunity to try a different location.
“I think it’s going to be a really positive change in a really good neighborhood with good exposure,” Zavacky said, adding that it will be difficult to say goodbye to the cafe’s longtime home.
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“I was a regular before I got the job here, and I have a ton of memories here,” said Zavacky, who often brought her children to the restaurant after she discovered it. “It was our own tucked-away funky place, and we absolutely loved it.”
Lang signed a 10-year lease and started remodeling the new spot a couple of months ago. He declined to comment on the cost of the remodel but said through Zavacky that the cafe’s sales have been increasing by 3 percent every year over the past several years.
The restaurant shut its doors once before: In 2010, an early-morning fire damaged the interior of the building. The business reopened in 2011, though not in time for Mardi Gras festivities as some customers had hoped.
“He paid his employees the entire time while this place was down,” Zavacky said. “He’s a phenomenal owner. Who would do that?”