A frozen treat popular in Michoacan, Mexico, and the young woman who wants to create them in downtown Chandler, are inspirations behind a new business coming to 96 W. Boston St., Paletas Betty.
For now, Beatriz "Betty" Alatorre, 29, and her fiancé, Alvin Hong, 31, are working with contractors to remodel the former Boston Street Pilates, an exercise studio that closed this year. They expect to be making and serving artisan frozen treats from fresh fruits and spices by the end of July.
Hong said downtown Chandler's "buzz" and eclectic mix of homegrown businesses attracted them to the spot even though neither lives in the city. Alatorre is a Phoenix resident; Hong lives in Gilbert.
"There is growth and excitement in downtown Chandler even during the recession," he said. Paletas Betty will stay open evenings and weekends, catering to crowds that come for art walks, farmers markets and festivals.
Hong is a computer hardware design engineer with a master's degree in business form Arizona State University. Alatorre has a bachelor's degree in marketing from ASU and works in finance. But duplicating the fresh treats she remembers from her childhood in Michoacan has been her passion.
"It's humble food made from scratch with a lot of love and starts with fresh fruit. One of my favorites is beet juice mixed with orange juice; it is so refreshing and healthy," she said. Alatorre said the menu will change with the harvest seasons and she plans to offer some of her more exotic favorites like chili-lime cucumber paletas, hibiscus and aroz con leche similar to rice pudding. Prices have not been set.
Landlord Tom Bliss described the products as "smoothies on a stick."
There is at least one other business in Chandler that sells paletas - Flor De Michoacan at 528 N. Arizona Ave.
Bliss, Hong and Alatorre believe the frozen treats could eventually be as popular and mainstream as popsicles and cold coffee drinks.
"Our next step could be carts and street vendors, but the Number 1 goal is quality. We want people to be aware that our paletas are not mass produced," Alatorre said. For more information visit the Paletas Betty Website.
Where is it? 35 W. Boston Street in downtown Chandler
When was it dedicated? Building opened in 1920, Kokopelli Winery opened shop there in 2001.
Who owns it? Kokopelli Winery
What's there? Now, a restaurant and micro-winery.
The Story: The First National Bank building, located at 35 W. Boston Street, opened on Feb. 24, 1920 and was Chandler's second bank. Headed by John Dobson, who was president, and John Anderson (vice president), the bank had assets of about $50,000 when it opened. During the Great Depression the bank fell on hard times, however. It merged with the Bank of Chandler in an effort to stay afloat, but later the combined banks failed. In 1936 Valley National Bank opened a branch in the building and remained there until it moved to 8 San Marcos Place (now home of Santan Brewing Co.) in 1955.
Wilcox-based Kokopelli Winery opened the Bistro at Kokopelli Winery in April of 2001. The owners received some financial incentives from the city to restore the facade to its original look. The original safe from the building's days as a bank remains in the building as well.
The building was one of several in downtown Chandler to be added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2000.
Now Bistro at Kokopelli is one of the most visited destinations in downtown Chandler. In addition to Kokopelli's signature wines, people visit the bistro to get a bite to eat or hear live music. It's an especially popular stop during the monthly art walks or during the Chandler Jazz Festival in April.
What this business offers: "Gentle and effective chiropractic care for all ages."
Owner: Peter R Sutton DC
Contact info: 4960 S. Alma School Rd., Suite 17; 480-802-0797.
Business hours: M,W,TH : 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 2:30-6 p.m. Mon., Wed.,Thur.; 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Fri.
Founded in Chandler: 2003
Number of employees: 3
A franchise or one of a kind? One of a kind.
What makes the business unique: "We are the only chiropractic office in Chandler to offer the Pro-Adjuster. The Pro-Adjuster is a unique tool that will analyze the spine for fixations using Piezo-electric technology. Once the fixated segments are identified the machine will adjust those segments to restore normal movement and release nerve entrapment. The Pro-Adjuster eliminates the need for manual adjustments that are often uncomfortable or intimidating. It opens up chiropractic therapy to those patients whose spine is not healthy enough to take a manual style adjustment."
What has worked better than you anticipated: When I first introduced the Pro-Adjuster to my clinic, I asked all of my patients to try it three times. . . . To my surprise about 75% of my patients asked to continue with the Pro-Adjuster."
Why should customers choose you? "Apex Chiropractic is the best choice for anyone who is experiencing neck or low back pain and is either apprehensive of the popping and cracking usually accompanying a Chiropractic adjustment or has arthritis or osteoporosis and can't take the force of a manual adjustment."
Why located in Chandler: "The growth prospect and family atmosphere makes Chandler a great place to live and work."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Being a small business owner myself , I am very conscious of supporting the "mom and pop" shops of Chandler."
What this business offers: Chiropractic care, physiotherapy, massage therapy.
Owner: Dr. Radi Rahimi, D.C.
Contact info: 1949 W. Ray Rd # 14, 1-866-44-CHIRO.
Business hours: 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and 3-6 p.m., Mon, Wed., and Fri.; , 3-6 p.m. Tue.-Thur., and 9 a.m.-noon, Sat.
When founded in Chandler: 2002
Number of employees: 8 in Chandler location.
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: One of four Valley-wide clinics.
What makes the business unique? "We focus on the implementation of chiropractic care along with physiotherapy. strength building, spinal stability detailed deep muscle therapy and rehabilitation."
What has worked better than you anticipated? Word of mouth and referrals.
Biggest daily challenge: Ever rising insurance costs for patients.
Why should customers choose you? "We treat the patient not their means of payment. We don't care about your insurance . . . we take the time to listen and assess all of your problems. We will do the best to our professional ability to get you better 100% and help you maintain your wellness naturally and safely."
Why located in Chandler: "This is where I grew up...it's my home."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "We support anything with time or money to help this beautiful city of Chandler grow. The community and its members have been so good to us and we feel honored to give back in any capacity me can."
What this business offers: Replacement ink and toner cartridges for printers, refurbished inkjet and laserjet printers, HP and Canon printer service and repair, thermal fax film, wax sticks, copier toner, and other printing supplies; power, parallel and USB cords.
Contact info: 3029 N. Alma School Road #121A (near Elliot Road), Chandler; 480-756-8615; www.cartridgeworldusa.com/store20.
Business hours: 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Mon-Fri.; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat.
When founded in Chandler: 2004
Number of employees: 5
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: Franchise
What makes the business unique? "We offer excellent recommendations for printers based on life expectancy of the machine and customer usage. We continue to keep up-to-date on the latest printers, cost factors, common problems, repairs and drawbacks of specific printer models. This information we freely disseminate to our customers through conversations and a quarterly newsletter."
What has worked better than you anticipated? "Educating customers on the benefits of repairing their printers versus replacing them."
Biggest daily challenge: "Keeping up with filling enough cartridges to meet the needs of every customer coming in the door."
Why should customers choose you? "Because we have proven that ink and toner cartridges can be reused several times with the same quality as a new cartridge while saving people lots of money."
Why located in Chandler: "We have found the city to be very receptive to recycling and because we have found the Chandler Chamber and its members to be a great group of business people in which to be associated."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "We believe if we can keep our business local, the community will support us and we can continue to support our communities through our school recycling programs which benefit not only our planet but our local PTO/PTA groups."
Business offers: "We have two stores serving chandler (the other is in Sun Lakes). We offer hardware, pool supplies, frazee paint, sunscreen installation, patio furniture at amazing prices, granite countertops, propane exchange, patio heaters and a large Christmas selection."
Franchise or one of a kind? Both are franchises of Ace Hardware and are owned by Robert and Brian.
What makes this business unique: "We bring in new/cool/fresh products that are hard to find anywhere and if there is a product you are looking for that is not on our shelf, we do what we can to special order it for you. We offer professional installation of sunscreens. . . . We carry high quality/value priced patio furniture year round. We also now sell pool supplies/parts at amazing prices."
What has worked better than we anticipated? "Creating a home town neighborhood feeling as a shopping experience."
Biggest daily challenge: "Letting people know all the specialty items (like canning products) we carry. We are very much a one-stop shop."
Why should customers choose you? "Our philosophy for our employees and customers is based on respect and a willingness to help. This attitude of respect and helpfulness is rare nowadays. When our customers need us - we are there for them."
Why located in Chandler? "Chandler is a great place to live and raise a family."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Because the economic impact of investing in our community reciprocates our ability to grow and prosper as a community."
What this business offers: Business cards, business stationery, graphic design services, trade show materials, presentations&reports, digital color prints, high speed b&w copies, color copies, oversize posters&banners, laminating & mounting, engineering drawings, labels, self-serve copies, resumes, fax services, passport photos, volume discounts, custom bids, electronic file submission, corporate accounts.
Owner: Bob & Kathy Sovik
Contact info: 6140 W. Chandler Blvd, #5; 480-893-0970;
Business hours: 7a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Fri.
Founded in Chandler: July 2002
Number of employees: Owners plus 4
Franchise or one-of-a-kind? Independent one-of-a-kind, family owned
What makes the business unique: "A locally owned business growing alongside the neighboring community, providing professionalism, personal service, fast turnaround, dedication to customer satisfaction, leading edge digital technology and competitive pricing."
What has worked better than you anticipated: "Our local customers are loyal repeat customers, each within their own schedules and requirements, who consistently advise their friends and colleagues to visit us for their printing needs."
Biggest daily challenge: "Living up to the quality and timeliness goals that we set for ourselves and that are deserved by all of our customers."
Why should customers choose you? "When you come to us with a project or specific need, we endeavor to understand what you want and wish to avoid, explain options and alternatives, commit only to what we know we can do well, and work to earn your business with every order."
Why located in Chandler: "Chandler offers a large market with continuing growth, a ready acceptance of new businesses and a track record of balancing commercial, residential and retail growth with an eye towards the long term viability of the overall community."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Every member of a local community, in their own way, contributes to the economic strength and sense of community that they enjoy. Locally owned small businesses make their own unique contributions by catering to the specific needs of local customers, providing employment for local residents, tax dollars and support of local organizations, schools and churches."
Contact info: 52 S San Marcos Place, Downtown Chandler; 602-769-9446; www.countryclipperbarbershop.com
Business hours: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Tue.-Fri.; 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat.
Founded in Chandler: 1912.
Number of employees: 4.
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: One of a kind.
What makes the business unique? Oldest barber shop in Arizona.
What has worked better than you anticipated? Word of mouth advertising.
Biggest daily challenge: "Keeping the wait for a cut to a minimum."
Why should customers choose you? "We have upheld many of the old barber traditions from cutting, shaving, to our conversations."
Why located in Chandler: Still located in the original building since 1912 and has had only six owners since it was opened." Why they support Shop Chandler: "Because we have been here since day one and have seen so many changes over the years, we just want the downtown Chandler to grow and become successful."
What this business offers: Picture framing, glass replacement, canvas stretching, photo restoration, dry mounting, and much more for individuals and businesses.
Owner: Tracy L. Morse
Contact info: 2875 W. Ray Rd., Chandler; (480) 345-0133, http://www.fastframe.com/storeLocations/store.php?id=3517
Business hours: 10am - 6pm (Mon-Fri), 10am - 5pm (Sat), By Appt. (Sun)
When founded in Chandler: Moved to Chandler in November 2007 from Mesa after 19 years in business.
Number of employees: 2
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: Franchise
What makes the business unique? "Although we are a franchise, what distinguishes our location is our focus on commercial services (restaurants, hotels, healthcare, office professionals, architecture and design firms, and property managers) in addition to individual clients. We cater to all of our clients by providing FREE in-home or on-site consultative services and providing the ability to show clients a digital preview of what their finished pieces could look like through a virtual framing software - it's amazing!"
What has worked better than you anticipated? "Having a tremendous number of our loyal customers from our old location follow us to our great new location - absolutely wonderful!"
Biggest daily challenge: "Getting the word out to businesses that are getting ready to open or existing ones that are expanding, moving, or relocating about the type of on-site service we can provide to them from art and design recommendations to framing, delivery, and installation."
Why should customers choose you? "Our quick turn-around (same day service available) and our 30-day design and lifetime craftsmanship guarantees."
Why located in Chandler: "Chandler is growing at a phenomenal rate - it's exciting to be a part of the community."
Why they support the Shop Chandler program: "Everyone loves receiving a referral from a trusted friend or family member for products and services that have been performed exceptionally well. By recommending a local business that has provided great service, we are all supporting investment back into the same community in which we live and raise our families."
Business hours: 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat.
Founded in Chandler: Sept. 2007
Number of employees: 2 plus 3 canine taste testers.
A franchise or one-of-a-kind? one of a kind.
What makes the business unique? "All-natural dog and cat treat bakery owned and operated by a chef."
What has worked better than you anticipated? "Joining the Chandler Chamber of Commerce has helped get our business name out into the community. We have gotten most of our clients through member referrals and word of mouth."
Biggest daily challenge: "Being a home-based business, the biggest daily challenge is making sure our name gets recognition to everyone we come in contact with."
Why should customers choose you? All of our treats are baked to order so they are always fresh. Nothing is sitting on a shelf waiting to be bought.
Why located in Chandler: "Chandler is a great city that has a lot to offer the people who live and shop here."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Nothing shows more pride than to support the place where you live."
What this business offers: Natural and organic bath and body products
Owner: Stephanie Reynolds.
Contact info: 4939 W. Ray Rd., Suite 4217; 480-993-2309; http://www.hothousebotanicals.com.
Business hours: "We sell our products online and you can place an order any day of the week."
When founded in Chandler: November 2007
Number of employees: 2
Franchise or one of a kind? One-of-a-kind
What makes this business unique: "Our products are handcrafted with the finest natural and organic ingredients available. All of our products offer: pure natural botanical aromatherapy, no synthetic fragrance or colors, no parabens, no SLS, and dirty-dozen free and cruelty-free Vegan-friendly ingredients, recycled glass containers for our soy candles and recyclable PET containers/lids on all of our personal care products."
Biggest daily challenge: "Driving traffic to our website and finding ways to let people know about Hothouse Botanicals."
Why should customers choose you? "We are an eco-friendly company and are honest about the ingredients we put into our products. Our products are luxuriously moisturizing, healthy for your skin, and contain the added bonus of aromatherapy."
Why located in Chandler: "My husband and I live in Chandler and it's close to home."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "We would like people to buy locally and support the Chandler community."
Contact info: 11 W. Boston St. Ste 6; www.LightRainImages.com; 480-699-5731.
Business hours: 10 a.m. - 6p.m. Mon.-Sat.
Founded in Chandler: 2007
Number of employees: 4
A franchise or one-of-a-kind? One-of-a-kind
What makes the business unique? "We provide the best value through quality control from image capture through superior graphic design and album creation and wall art."
What has worked better than you anticipated? Cooperation with other wedding vendors in starting DoChaVida and hosting Wedding Walks.
Biggest daily challenge: Cash flow
Why should customers choose you? "We provide heirloom quality photography that will be cherished for a lifetime and handed down to future generations."
Why located in Chandler: "We located in historic Downtown Chandler to be among other vendors that specialize in wedding services and have created a brand for the group called DoCha Vida www.DoChaVida.com to market the area as a wedding shopping destination."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "We want money spent in Chandler to stay circulating in Chandler's economy."
What this business offers: Small-business consulting Owner: Stuart Preston
Contact info: 6045 W Chandler Blvd #13-126, Chandler; 480-242-3780; www.mybusiness-advisors.com
Business hours: By appointment
When founded in Chandler: March 2004
Number of employees: 1
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: One-of-a-kind
What makes the business unique? "We help small business owners grow and develop their companies, even during these tough times. Stuart has a history of small business ownership and share his experiences with his clients - the good AND the bad."
What has worked better than you anticipated? Networking through the Chandler Chamber.
Biggest daily challenge: "Time management - making sure all of my clients get 100%."
Why should customers choose you? "I've been in my clients' shoes - I know what it's like to run a small business."
Why business located in Chandler: "The Chamber. At an event, I was introduced to Mary Ann at the Chamber and my business has grown ever since."
Why they support the Shop Chandler program: "The news on TV keeps telling consumers to save and stop eating out. I say, keep eating out, but dine locally! That goes for all of our shopping and spending. Keep your dollars here in Chandler with locally-owned businesses and that money will stay here. If we stick together as a community, we will come out of the recession even stronger!"
What makes the business unique? "We offer high-end maternity clothes at affordable prices. Our prices are typically $5-$7 dollars less per item than you would find online, or in maternity shops in Scottsdale. We keep our expenses low and . . . bring in new merchandise weekly."
What has worked better that you anticipated? "Moving the store to Chandler in 2001, We closed our store in Tempe (started in 1997) on a Saturday, moved all fixtures and clothing Saturday night and Sunday morning. We opened on Monday and never missed a beat."
Biggest daily challenge? "We are always looking for new customers. With all other businesses, if your customers like your store and selection they will be a customer for life. With our store we lose our customers after nine months. We have a short period of time to keep our customers. Word of mouth is vital for our business to survive. Thankfully, pregnancy and babies will never go out of style."
Why should customers choose you? "They get the service they want. Our team has been together for several years and is very knowledgeable of all the products in our store. We also have a small play area in our store, so it helps for moms with children to be able to shop while the children are busy with the toys."
Why located in Chandler: "There are lots of young families in Chandler and the surrounding areas. Also Chandler is where I live, I love working so close to home and being near my kids."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "When consumers shop locally owned businesses, it keeps tax dollars in Chandler. It also keeps the independent local businesses open. Our store is 100% different in merchandise and service than the large chains."
Business name: Russian Oasis, Treasury of the Tsars
What this business offers: "All of our merchandise is imported from Russia. We offer a large selection of elegant porcelain and full lead crystal for the home. We also feature hand-crafted straw-inlaid and lacquer jewelry boxes and glass figurines. For collectors, we have exquisitely crafted porcelain dolls, masks, and figurines. We feature Arizona's largest selection of Baltic amber jewelry. And, of course, we have a wide selection of Russian nesting dolls ranging from traditional Russian designs to fun, familiar characters. For those cold desert nights, we offer ultra-thin, ultra-warm wool "spiderweb" shawls, as well as traditional Russian knit wool and silk shawls."
What makes the business unique? "Russian Oasis is the only shop in the East Valley that offers high quality authentic Russian imports. Our amber selection alone makes the store stand out. With imperial porcelain and high-end crystal it is a unique boutique worth visiting."
What has worked better than you anticipated? "The response of our customers has truly been amazing! In less than a year we've already acquired some returning customers. We appreciate the positive feedback and want to thank all our customers for support and great response."
Why should customers choose you? "Not only do we offer unique items people won't find anywhere else, we can tell customers where they come from, how they are made and anything else they want to know before they buy something which makes it a unique shopping experience for a one-of-a-kind gift."
Why located in Chandler: "As Chandler residents we thought it would only be logical to open a business in Chandler. It allows us to work in the same community we live in."
Why they support the Shop Chandler program: "As Chandler residents and business owners we want to encourage people to shop locally. When you shop locally you put more money back into your community than when you shop at a chain store. And supporting the community you live and work in is one of the main goals of a business owner."
What makes the business unique: "Family-owned beauty school providing training in cosmetology (hair) and esthetics (skin), where there are wonderful career opportunities for men and women. Arizona is the land of looking good, so careers in beauty are plentiful. It is a $3-billion industry and sees no signs of slowing down. . . . The beauty industry affords a high income potential and flexibility. Once graduates receive their license, they can take it where ever they want. Part of the training includes students working on a full service clinic floor offering all hair services from color, perms, special occasion styles to haircuts. Esthetics (skin care) students offer facials, waxing, body treatments and makeup applications. All these services are less than salon prices (and) supervised by licensed educators."
What has worked better than anticipated? "The demand for services on our clinic floor and endless stream of men and women wanting to enter this career field who are extremely talented."
Why should customers choose you? "Personal touch from owners and educators who really care about the future of their graduates. The clinic floor prices are inexpensive and you get great customer service from students who really want to do a good job for their clients. With a slow economy, it is a great way to save on your beauty regiment and you don't have to give up your regularly scheduled hair color, cuts or facials."
Why business located in Chandler: The Koluch family lives in Chandler
Why they support the Shop Chandler: "The Koluch family lives and shops here so we want to promote residents and others to come to Chandler and see that Chandler has a lot to offer in the community: beauty, fashion, restaurants and entertainment."
Contact info: 11 West Boston St. Suite 3, Chandler; 480-242-9408; www.uptownbrides.com, email@example.com
Business hours: Tuesday- Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
When founded in Chandler: February 2007
Number of employees: Owners plus 1
A franchise or one-of-a-kind? One-of-a-kind, family-owned.
What makes the business unique? "We strive to make the wedding gown shopping experience as unforgettable and special as possible. We work individually with all our brides in a personal bridal suite and assist them in making the gown choice of their dreams. We showcase exclusive designers and styles. We also carry an enchanting line of gifts for the bride, birthdays, and babies."
What has worked better than you anticipated? "Our personal and special touch to service. The brides love working with us in such a personal and intimate setting. They know we care about them and their special day.
Biggest daily challenge: Informing brides on who we are, where we are, and why buying a dress from Uptown Bridal can make their special day unique and unforgettable."
Why should customers choose you? "Our promise is to please our brides from the moment they enter into our fabulously renovated 1918 salon until the groom watches her take the memorable stroll down the aisle. With personal service and exclusive designers, we strive to make the wedding gown shopping experience unique, unforgettable, and 'Uptown.'"
Why located in Chandler: "We love the Historic Downtown area. We chose to be downtown because of the community and charm."
Why they support the Invest Wisely, Shop Chandler program: "We believe in Chandler and our business investment we have developed in this great city. By shopping locally, especially in one-of-a-kind/family owned businesses, we can carry on the tradition of the charming, Chandler community of the past and the future to come."
What this business offers: "A wide variety of dietary and nutritional food supplements . . . Designed to improve stamina, restore sleep, make your work-out more effective, and help people lose weight, these products help people of all ages live life to its fullest. . . .
Vitaelin Nutraceuticals also offers a whole range of skin care. The special formulation of these products offer a true Botox® alternative. Contact info: 4960 South Gilbert Rd., Suite 1-286; 480-626-7218, http://vitaelinhealthcenter.com; Online shop: http://www.vitaelin.biz
Contact: Dr. Peter Hofland (PhD), Info@vitaelinhealthcenter.com.
Business hours: online open 24/7.
When founded in Chandler: First established in The Netherlands and France in 2000, joined Chandler Chamber of Commerce in the 2008.
A franchise or one-of-a-kind: One-of-a-kind.
What makes the business unique: "Vitaelin Nutraceuticals is dedication to healthcare and nutrition. By offering patients and customers true health and nutrition-related information and tested products, we feel that we can truly make a difference and help individuals."
Biggest daily challenge: "Because we are only available online, targeting customers overloaded with information is a major (daily) challenge."
Why should customers choose you: "In addition to high quality products, customers benefit from the wealth of knowledge and information offered by the team of healthcare professionals supporting the brand and the products." The company offers a special lifestyle coaching programs, and offers companies a health and wellness education and management programs.
Why located in Chandler: "The city offers a friendly and inspiring environment for new and small companies. . . . Definitely one of the best in North America."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Because the city offers an inspiring environment for new and small companies. We believe that, although clients order all products online, the sales tax revenues are wisely invested in Chandler, benefiting and supporting the local community."
What this business offers: "We are the new "old-fashioned meat market" offering high-quality meats at reasonable prices and specialty items such as in-store-made beef jerky, 70 varieties of brats and sausages, and other unique foods such as lefsa and Wisconsin cheese curds. We also offer beef, pork, chicken, veal, buffalo and lamb, do wild game processing and sell beer and wine."
Owner: Gene and Martha Neese, partners with individuals in company with the 20 stores in Minnesota.
Contact info: 2390 N. Alma School Road (at Warner), Chandler; 480-917-2525; www.vonhansons.com.
A franchise or one of a kind: Affiliated with Von Hanson's Meats of Minnesota but not a franchise.
What makes the business unique: "A customer may buy a meat pack with large quantities for their freezer or purchase one pork chop or steak cut to the desired thickness. We grind our hamburger fresh daily and also offer flavored hamburger such as Cabin Chili and jalapeño. We also offer holiday foods such as fresh Minnesota range grown turkeys without preservatives or hormones, and a variety of hams."
What has worked better than you anticipated: "After the pet food recall in 2007, our request for raw meats for dogs increased dramatically. The fact our customers can shop for themselves and their dogs at the same time has worked well."
Biggest daily challenge: "Getting people to know we are here has been a challenge."
Why should customers choose you? Customers should choose our store for their meats because we offer the best and largest varieties of fresh meats and sausages in Chandler. We also allow the customer to develop a relationship with their friendly butcher who cut and make our meat products daily for the customer's family dinner table. . . . Our butchers are also willing to try family recipes."
Why located in Chandler: "I and other Von Hanson Minnesota customers . . . used to bring meat from Minnesota in suitcases for their winter stays."
Why they support Shop Chandler: "Local community involvement and commitment."
1901 W. Warner Road (southeast corner of Warner and Dobson roads)
When did it open?
May 28, 2005
Sandwiches, smoothies and other food at reasonable prices
Signs heralding the coming of Lee's Sandwiches were in place for nearly a year before the shop opened in the spring of 2005. Apparently that buildup worked, as the sandwich shop has been a popular lunch-time destination ever since. Former California residents now living in the area are probably a big part of the reason for Lee's popularity as several shops have been serving hungry customers in that state since the family began selling sandwiches from a catering truck in San Jose in the 1980s.
Lee's Sandwiches draws customers in with a variety of banh mi - Vietnamese-style sandwiches - and more traditional Western sandwiches. Offerings range from somewhat exotic choices like head cheese or pate to more familiar fare like roast beef and turkey. Sandwiches are served on fresh baked baguettes or croissants.
In addition to dozens of sandwich choices, Lee's offers Asian delicacies like steamed pork buns and spring rolls, smoothies, coffee and pastry.
Some California transplants might be disappointed to learn that the Chandler location isn't open to the wee hours of the morning like some of the locations in that state. Hours at the Chandler shop are 8 a.m.-9 p.m. daily.
A popular downtown Chandler restaurant that abruptly closed in December is re-opening next month with new owners, a new name and the same chef.
The former 98 South Wine Bar & Kitchen will become Fat Cat with an expanded emphasis on fine food and a more hip interior, said Neal Washburn, managing partner for Off Boston LLC. Dinner service Tuesday through Saturday will start Feb. 2 and a grand opening is set for Feb. 6.
"We have some very loyal customers and are happy that this will essentially be the same sort of restaurant we had before," said landlord Tom Bliss.Downtown Chandler is becoming an increasingly popular destination, and"There's something magical about the location, a certain historical chic that goes with a building that will be 100 years old in 2015," he said.
Bliss said retention of Chef Brian Ferguson is a good move by the new owners. "His excellent quality food was very well received."
Ferguson, who cooked for resorts and restaurants in France, San Francisco, Dallas and Scottsdale before 98 South said he intends to keep many of the popular menu items but expand the fare to include more fresh and in-season items. "I will bring back scallops with sweet corn and vanilla bean sauce . . . but I want to work on creating new, more interesting dishes with fresh fish and more diverse products," he said.
Washburn said dinner prices will be $16 to $28 and décor inside the historic building will be more hip and modern. "We won't be stuffy; service will be fun and energetic and there won't be as much live entertainment. We will be focusing more on being a restaurant."
His partners are Rich Lubin and Tom Messier of Chandler. Washburn, a Glendale resident, said he has worked in the business for 30 years "from the dish pit and everything in between" but this is hasn't owned one until now.
The restaurant, which opened as 98 South in 2004, closed for the first time in October 2008and former owner Ron Wojcicki filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 7.
After that closure Bliss said he received a lot of interest from restaurateurs, and at one point it looked as though Oregano's
would open there. In April, it re-opened with the 98 South name under ownership of Scottsdale-based Victoria Asset Management.
Bliss locked out Victoria Asset Management after he failed to receive December rent.
The landlord said he believes the former owner's financial troubles were tied to another business, not the popular restaurant.
Six months after it closed unexpectedly, downtown Chandler's 98 South wine
bar has reopened under new ownership. It opened its doors last Friday
night, just in time to get some attention from folks attending last
weekend's Chandler Jazz Festival.
Chef Brian Ferguson tells me that the current menu
is extremely limited, and "nothing indicative of what the menu will
be." (It's consists of three sandwiches at the moment.) The full menu
will debut in about two weeks, featuring upscale, French-influenced bistro cuisine,
from a unique selection of cheeses ("I'm on a campaign for good
cheese," says Ferguson. Here, here!) to ribeye with pommes frites.
The vibe will be familiar to old regulars, but still fresh,
according to Ferguson. They've installed new artwork, as well as a baby
grande piano, which will be a focal point for live jazz performances at
98 South is located at 98 S. San Marcos Pl. in Chandler. Current
hours are 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., and there is a full bar with wines and
specialty martinis. Call 480-814-9800 for more info.