CEDAR RAPIDS – The wait is finally over.
Co-owner Lenny Sims summed up the opening of his restaurant, Sauce Bar & Bistro, in one word: “relief.”
After two years of work, it’s no wonder.
Sims and co-owner Chris Robinson used two days this week for a soft opening of the bistro, at 1507 C St. SW, with the formal opening planned for Thursday, June 25, 2015.
Lunches only will be served for the first two weeks or so, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hours may be added once Sauce obtains its liquor license, Sims said.
Sauce’s concept features high quality, seasonal food in a casual atmosphere.
Lunches will reflect the name of the business, offering slow roasted meat sandwiches and other selections. Eventually, locally sourced dinners with a menu that changes with the seasons will be served.
Weather was among the issues that led to a much longer than anticipated wait to open the bistro, which will seat about 80 people.
Sims and Robinson ended up doing much of the work on the leased building on their own. The 1925-era building – flooded along with the rest of Czech Village in 2008 – formerly served as a garage, an appliance store, a Harley-Davidson business and a meat market.
Sims will handle the financial side of the business, while Robinson, who most recently worked as a chef at Daly Creek in Anamosa, and Joshua Tibbetts – known in Cedar Rapids for riding his unusually tall homemade bike – will be chefs.
Sauce will help fill a void already felt by the recent closure of another Czech Village restaurant.
Smuggler’s Wharf, a seafood restaurant just around the corner at 95 16th Ave. SW, closed earlier this month. Owner Al Zindrick attributed the closure, in part, to the loss of the restaurant’s liquor license.
Follow Sauce on their Facebook page and see more photos from their soft opening, below: