Favorite

Side dish: Sand and spirits at BooDad's 

Bump, set, eat

Truly, BooDad's Beach House Grill (5910 Omaha Blvd., boodadsbeachhouse.com) is old and new again.

Formerly the Sand Pits Beach Volleybar & Grill, and Sharkey's, and Porky's, and Oscar's East, the property has been perpetually owned by Todd Dorman since he created the faux-beach site in 1998. Others had rented the food-and-drink operation from him, but he always ran the volleyball courts and popular league nights.

Last June, he took over full operations again before shutting down around Halloween for extensive renovations. Leading up to the Friday, April 13 grand re-opening under the new brand, complete with new menu, Dorman says he'll have invested roughly $250,000 to double the interior seating, expand the kitchen, and completely remodel the interior and exterior. (The 2,000 tons of sand comprising the five volleyball courts remain the same.)

"Even our regulars will barely recognize it," he says. "We're treating volleyball as the summer bonus now — the core business is the restaurant and bar."

As such, some old family recipes from Louisiana have undergone up to "a dozen or more tweaks" before being finalized. He's calling the new style "American cuisine with a Cajun influence," meaning po-boys, muffalettas, etouffée and seafood items past burgers, sandwiches and a list of beach-y cocktails and shots. Look for a remoulade-like "secret BooSauce" across the menu as well. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., daily.

Spreading jelly

Only nine months or so after opening (and arguably contributing to Opb&j's demise), P.B. & Jellies New York Deli (106 E. Kiowa St., pbandjellies.com) already has expansion plans. Around mid-May, owner Art Romero aims to have a retail store open around their corner, at 103 N. Tejon St.

Romero says the retail space has become necessary to fulfill large-volume mail orders and local requests for items like gift boxes that go to Air Force Academy cadets. Inside those boxes are house-blended peanut butters and employee Lisa Johnson's unique and state-fair-award-winning jellies. Her flavors range from bananas Foster to carrot cake to caramelized onion and garlic.

Romero says the "one-of-a-kind" space will also stock the speciality peanut butters and jellies, along with paraphernalia of all sorts: magnets, trinkets, candies, P.B. & Jellies trademarked T-shirts and other "touristy" items.

À la carte

• Chef Pete Aiello recently left AspenPointe Café to take Jay Gust's former spot at Maxi's Restaurant and Lounge at the Doubletree Hotel - World Arena (1775 E. Cheyenne Mountain Blvd., 576-8900). Gust had departed to head TAPAteria.

Pegasus Mediterranean Cafe has closed at 19251 E. U.S. Hwy. 24 in Woodland Park.

  • Also: P.B. & Jellies expanding

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