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1st Street Bistro: A grand opening and an immediate positive customer response

(June 14, 2013) The 1st Street Bistro celebrated its grand opening in mid-May and the response from customers since then has been overwhelmingly positive.

“People have been very receptive. There has been nothing but positive reactions,” said Don Quackenbush, who runs the bistro. He is also the operations manager of the Sleep Inn & Suites, on the corner of First Street and Baltimore Avenue, where the bistro is located.

“It’s a really convenient location,” Quackenbush said. “It’s convenient for people walking by and the bistro is another amenity for the hotel guests.”

Although the bistro has only been open for about a month, many customers have been repeats. They are pleased with the low prices and good portions, Quackenbush said.

“They can feed their family in here for $20 and that makes their experience more enjoyable,” he said.

Breakfast, which includes Belgian waffles, bagels, sandwiches and combos, is available all day.

Classic cold cut, Italian cold cut, roast beef, meatball, smoked turkey breast and ham are the bistro’s featured six- and 12-inch subs. Grilled sandwiches include chicken and cheddar, ham and cheese and smoked turkey and swiss.

“They’re really big. You get a lot for [the price],” said employee Ashley Houston.

Customers can also get an all-beef quarter-pound hot dog for $2.99. Chef and garden salads and a grilled chicken Caesar salad are offered, too.

The $2.99 children’s menu includes a hot dog and grilled cheese, ham and cheese and peanut butter and grape jelly sandwiches.

To satisfy that sweet tooth, the bistro offers ice cream sandwiches, freshly baked cookies and cheesecake. Beer and wine is also available.

The 1st Street Bistro offers several homemade wine coolers. They are white-wine based and mixed with different juices. Summer Breeze OC Cooler (white wine, Seagrams ginger ale, blackberry and blueberry-pomegranate juice) and Ocean Sunrise OC Cooler (white wine, Seagrams ginger ale, orange and pineapple juice) are just two to choose from.

“They’re made with 100 percent juices because it tastes better. It’s a cold and refreshing drink,” Quackenbush said. “People love the wine coolers, especially the 80s and early-90s generations, when they were really popular.”

Carol Weigner, Sleep Inn front desk Manager said the coolers are “nice and light for the summertime.”

Happy hour is daily from 2-7 p.m. with $2 domestic beers. A sub will be featured daily for $4.99.

Dining is available inside the eatery and on the outdoor porch.

The 1st Street Bistro is open daily, 11 a .m. to 2 a.m.

Carol Weigner, Sleep Inn & Suites front desk manager, left, and Ashley Houston, welcome guests to the 1st Street Bistro, located on the first floor of the hotel.

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