We were privileged to be part of a lovely surprise recently. Nadine Schubert, who lives in Germany, contacted us about arranging something special to gift to her California-based boyfriend, Sebastian, to commemorate their anniversary. (The couple had their first date at Hobee’s Mountain View.) On the morning of the big day, we personally delivered a heart-shaped coffeecake tin to Sebastian. We knew that our mission was a success based on this adorable screen shot from their conversation later that morning:
Sunday just got a little sunnier: Starting September 1st, both Hobee’s Palo Alto and Hobee’s Sunnyvale began staying open after lunch until 9:00 PM! Previously, our employees at both locations had noticed a large number of customers tugging on our locked doors on Sunday afternoons. Now, our fans can stay longer, have a late lunch or savor Sunday supper. The new night got off to a rousing start in September, when we added a special Sunday edition of Kids Eat Free.
We were incredibly honored to once again receive the Best Breakfast award from readers The Mountain View Voice. This was our Hobee’s Mountain View’s 21st straight year on top. We never take these kudos for granted and work hard to secure your vote each and every year. Thanks for voting for us!
Why only 21 wins? The poll didn’t start until 1991, when the restaurant was already 18 years old!
For the second straight year, Hobee’s went deep into the Social Madness contest sponsored by The Silicon Valley Business Journal. All of your Likes, Comments and Retweets on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ took us to the semi-final round, where we fought valiantly against an inspired Willow Street Wood-Fired Pizza team. (Willow Street ended up going all the way to the national competition.) The nice consolation prize we received was lots of increased social media buzz. Thanks for your support!
A capacity crowd at Hobee’s Sunnyvale was treated to a very apecial surprise visit on June 15th: Vice President Joe Biden accompanied U.S. Representative Mike Honda (D-San Jose) to breakfast at Honda’s favorite breakfast place. The Vice President, who was in town to support the congressman’s reelection bid, circulated throughout the restaurant and enthusiastically greeted customers and employees. Many had the opportunity to take photos with the Veep, including the Hobee’s staff. At one point, Biden walked back into the kitchen to meet the cooks. When he finally sat down, Biden not surprisingly ordered a piece of blueberry coffeecake. (He ate the whole thing with gusto!)
Several news outlets covered the visit, including The San Jose Mercury News: http://www.mercurynews.com/bay-area-news/ci_23469094/vp-joe-biden-drops-by-sunnyvale-hobees-rep
Sunnyvale Manager Janet Enciso gave Vice President Joe Biden a warm “aloha” to Hobee’s.
All of us at Hobee’s were saddened to learn that former employee Tina Favaloro had died. Tina passed away in April in Saratoga in the company of her loving family. She had battled cancer since last spring.
Tina worked at Hobee’s Pruneyard as a server and manager for over a dozen years. She was a seasoned restaurant pro and performed her duties with confidence and an ever-present smile. Tina loved her customers and always took extra time with her regulars. Her hearty laugh could often be heard echoing through the restaurant. She was a favorite of co-workers who found her warm spirit to be inspiring and infectious.
A few weeks ago before her death, we presented Tina with our annual Hobee’s Hero Award in recognition of her strength in the face of adversity. In May, her family, friends, co-workers and even some regular Hobee’s customers gathered to celebrate her life. All of us at Hobee’s will miss her dearly. We send out our heartfelt thoughts and prayers to her daughter, Gianna, and the rest of her family.
Tina was always cheerful and upbeat. She loved Hobee’s and her regulars.
After repeated requests from our friends in the Celiacs community, we’re pleased to announce gluten-free options at Hobee’s. Our special menu was introduced in May and June. We rolled it out in stages to ensure that our staff was properly trained on preparing and describing our gluten-free offerings. (We even hosted Free Gluten-Free nights to give everyone practice.)
The Gluten-Free Menu will no doubt evolve over time. Here is our starting line up:
2 eggs (any style), country-style hashbrowns and your choice of corn tortillas or Udi’s gluten-free toast $7.95
Add turkey bacon, ham, or chicken apple sausage . . . . . . . $ 9.95
Made with Gluten-free Pantry brown rice pancake mix and served with real maple syrup
Plain $8.25 with seasonal fruit $10.50
Lunch / Dinner
Pollo Supremo Tacos
Corn tortillas with chicken breast, mushrooms. Jack and Cheddar, brown rice pilaf topped with salsa, guac and sour cream.
Served with tri-color tortilla chips . . . . . $10.95
1/3 lb. Ground chuck patty, chicken breast, turkey patty or grilled Portobello mushroom with 2 slices of turkey
bacon and cheddar cheese on Udi’s Gluten-free bread. Served with tri-color tortilla chips . . . . . $10.95
An entrée salad with spring mix, grilled breast of chicken strips, pears, apples, walnuts, dried fruit and
Bleu cheese in a raspberry vinaigrette . . . $11.95
Hartland Gluten-free fusilli pasta (prepared in separate water than other pastas) available with
Marinara . . . . $ 12.95 Wild Wild (mushrooms, garlic, green onion) . . . $12.95
Pasta Pesto . . . $12.95 Salmon (mushrooms, spinach, capers, tomato) . . . $13.95
Just for Kids
Gluten-Free Mickey’s Pancake
Kid-sized pancake made with Gluten-free Pantry brown rice pancake mix . . . $4.95
Kid-sized Eye Opener
1 egg (any style), country-style hashbrowns and your choice of corn tortillas or Udi’s gluten-free toast $5.95
Add turkey bacon or chicken apple sausage . . . . . . . $ 6.95
Kid-sized Gluten-Free Pasta
Hartland Gluten-free fusilli pasta (prepared in separate water than other pastas) with Marinara . . . $5.95
In addition, we offer several gluten-friendly items which are gluten-friendly but have been prepared along side other items in the kitchen. These items include vegetable soups (other than veggie pasta), salad dressings and turkey burgers.
Because we were so swamped this winter (see the Hobee’s Stanford closing story below), we decided to forgo our usual big awards event. That did not mean, however, that we skipped the opportunity to recognize our superstar employees. We simply took the show on the road and personally congratulated nearly every winner and runner up in over a dozen categories. This was a fun, personal way to commend each employee for a job well done. Please join us in congratulating the following winners for 2012:
Outstanding Host – (tie) Moises Hernandez (Sunnyvale) and Esperanza Juarez (Pruneyard)
Outstanding Manager – Ruben Alba (Sunnyvale)
Rookie of the Year – Mario Morales (Montague)
Outstanding Kitchen Crewmember – Jose Uriostegui (Sunnyvale)
Customers’ Choice Award – Elena Perez (Sunnyvale)
Supportive Organization Award – Kiwanis Club of Palo Alto
Hobee’s Hero – Tina Favaloro (Pruneyard)
Highest Annual Sales Awards – Montague (2 Periods) and Pruneyard (3 Periods)
Secret Shopper Award – (tie) Mountain View and Redwood Shores
Outstanding Server – Rafael Virrueta (Stanford)
Outstanding General Manager – Felipe Zarate (Pruneyard)
Paul Taber Commitment to Excellence Award – Jose Luis Salto (Palo Alto)
Outstanding Kitchen Manager – Roque Marin (Sunnyvale)
Customer Hall of Fame – Chrystal Bougon (Los Gatos); Janet & Georges Carpentier (Pruneyard);
and Ed Hudson (Montague Expressway)
Felipe Zarate from Hobee’s Pruneyard won his fourth Outstanding GM title.