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Culinary crumbs and gastronomic gossip

Opening pitch
Grand Slam Subs (101 N. Tejon St., #106) will throw a grand opening celebration, complete with giveaways, Feb. 23. As the name suggests, the new venture will borrow its decor and operate thematically around baseball. Staff will wear uniforms and hats, and sandwiches will be called things like "curveball meatball" and "at-bat" (bacon, avocado, turkey).

Co-owners and baseball aficionados Fred Lindhe and Adam Gemoets, both recent arrivals to the Springs, say they will bake breads daily from scratch, in-house, and start with a focused menu of a dozen sandwiches, a soup du jour, a few hand-tossed salads, homemade cookies and a signature 18-inch pepperoni cheese stick. Bag lunches will be available on the fly, and they'll offer free delivery to the downtown area.

Lindhe, who started a chain in the late '80s called Big Town Hero that's still alive on the West Coast, has since managed and lost his taste for a number of corporate establishments. With competitively priced Grand Slam Subs, he says he wants to "take you back 35 years in service and customer satisfaction."

Initial hours will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily except Sundays, with expanded hours once baseball season gets into full swing. (D'oh!) Plans include the addition of televisions set to baseball-themed movies and game broadcasts. Call 634-SUBS (7827) for more or try grandslamsubs.com (up and running soon).

Crumbs
If you didn't make any Valentine's Day reservations, you'll have a near-impossible time dining on the best area prix fixe menus tonight. Two ideas: Call a few places anyway to inquire about late cancellations, or dine out Friday, when many places will serve some of the same dishes as specials.

Reuben's Fusion has closed at 925 S. Eighth St., after just three months in business. The establishment had been located next to Old World European Restaurant, which also closed its doors recently. Note to would-be restaurateurs: location, location, location.

The Steaksmith Restaurant recently announced an under-$10 menu that's available nightly in its "fireside lounge" area, adjacent to the dining room (which still serves more pricey fare). The new menu includes fish and chips, a "Steakburger," salads, soups and drink and appetizer specials. Call 596-9300 for more.

Know of a new menu, event or other food-related news? E-mail your tidbits to scene@csindy.com.

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