Monday, February 26, 2007

'Napa Valley Cuisine at Vacaville Prices'

'Napa Valley Cuisine at Vacaville Prices'
By Ian Thompson

Shakers Grill House owner Frank Welcker promises he will eventually offer a Sunday brunch. (Christine Baker/Daily Republic)

VACAVILLE - Good Napa-style cuisine in a relaxing atmosphere is what Vacaville residents will get to experience when Shakers Grill House opens next month.

Owner Frank Welcker loves to cook, was once a chef and has always wanted to open a quality restaurant.

That opportunity came last year when he discovered Las Palmas, a nightclub on Orange Circle that was in its last days of business.

Welcker suggested reopening it as a restaurant, an idea the building owner liked. Welcker signed a lease to create Shakers Grill House, "which will offer Napa Valley cuisine at Vacaville prices."

"It will be a great hangout place with good food and a very comfortable atmosphere," Welcker said.

The downstairs will have restaurant seating and two bars while the upstairs will be used for special events such as business meetings, birthday parties and bridal showers.

For the business meetings, the grill house will be completely wireless to allow PowerPoint presentations, Welcker said.

"There will be no nightclub activities in deference to the seniors," Welcker said of the senior citizens' neighborhood located to the south of Shakers Grill House. "We are going to stay away from the live music. We want to fit into the community."

There will be flat-screen screen TVs for sports fans, pool tables and darts in a casual setting to put the patrons at ease and enjoy themselves.

"Our other aspect will be catering," Welcker said. "We have a very experienced event planner and caterer on board to serve our customers' needs."

Rodney Ivan Botelho, who has served as chef for 15 years at venues that have included Merchant & Main, Cache Creek Casino and Stars, will run the kitchen.

Welcker describes the fare as "American fusion" that centers on steak and seafood "with an international twist" on what he calls an interactive menu where the patron can build their own meal in a combination of main courses and appetizers.

The grand opening is slated for mid-March with Welcker and Botelho offering free food samples of everything on the menu to show new patrons what the restaurant can do.

Unlike many other restaurants, the place has plenty of parking and it will offer a 15 percent discount to senior patrons.

Long-range plans simply are to offer as good a dining experience as possible in a relaxed atmosphere.

A month after Shakers Grill House opens, Welcker plans to start offering Sunday brunches.

Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or at

Shakers Grill House

70 Orange Tree Circle, Vacaville

Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday to Thursday; 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday.

Phone: 446-9925

Web site: (under construction)

Owner: Frank Welcker

Open for business: March 15 (tentative)

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