Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Burger Factory

I am almost embarrassed to say how often we get take-out at the Burger Factory. It's not daily nor several times a week, but if the husband and I were younger and more active, it would be. So far, it's every 7 to 10 days that we tootle down to the tiny shack on San Benito Street for what we believe are the most delicious and affordable hamburgers and french fries in town.

The Burger Factory opened last fall. Originally it was called the Burger Hut, but a chain with the same name told the owners that they better change the name of their business or else. Old name, new name, doesn't matter. The food is just plain yummmmm!  

Julie and Jin Hyun are the owners who do all the cooking and serving, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m, Monday through Saturday. Smiling Julie takes orders and runs around in the small place, putting together salads and greenery to dishes, while her husband Jin attends to the grill. On rainy or cold days, Julie has told us to go back to our car and then she brings our order to us when it's ready. How's that for service.

My favorite burger is a tie between the jalapeño burger and the mushroom burger. Jalapeño or mushroom slices are nestled between the perfectly grilled hamburger meat and sliced onions and tomatoes. Yummmm. If hamburgers aren't your thing, you can try the other items, such as teriyaki bowls, fish and chips, hot link sandwiches, and steak sandwiches. Yummmm. Recently, the Hyuns started offering breakfast croissants and coffee for morning fare.

The Burger Factory is located at 125 San Benito Street, the east side, between First and Second Streets. it's between the railroad crossing and the once-upon-a time Bishop Motors (I can't remember what's in that spot now.) A few tables are available for you to sit and eat your food, if you can't wait until you get home.

And, no, I wasn't paid to write how much I like the Burger Factory. A couple times, Julie did give me some homemade kimchi for free when I  kiddingly asked once if they'd ever offer kimchi burgers. Her kimchi is yummmmmmm. She won't be selling it anytime soon though. She says it's too much work to be able to offer if all the time. I'm not embarrassed to say this: I do want the Burger Factory to stay around forever.

2010 Hollister Airshow

The first-ever air show is happening at the Hollister Municipal Airport this weekend. Whoo-hoo!

What will there be to see? Devil may-care aerobatic maneuvers, WWII fighter fly-bys, skydiving demonstrations, aircraft displays, vendors, and more!

And there will be many things to do, do, do, too! For instance, you can go up in the air in a historic 1930 biplane for $60 with Nostalgic Warbird and Biplane Rides.  In fact, the outfit will start taking parties up on Friday. First come, first served.

So, when will it be? This Saturday, May 29 and Sunday, May 30, from  10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

How much will it cost?  Entry fee is $5 per person. Children under 5 get in for free. There's also a $3 per car entry fee.  Be sure to have cash or your checkbook. That's all they'll be taking at the gate.

If you want to bypass the car fee, you can catch the free shuttle bus at the downtown parking garage (also free) on 4th and San Benito Streets. The service will come every 30 minutes from 9:30 to 4:30, so I'm told.  Free bus service will also be available on demand for folks who will be flying into the Frazier Lake Airpark.

Want to check out the schedule of events? Click here

For further details about the event and Hollister, check out these sites:
Now, for here's a peek of Jacquie B, one of the performers this weekend.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Portuguese Festival Parade

Every year, the Portuguese American community in Hollister holds a festival on pentacost Sunday to celebrate the life of Queen Isabella, who was said to have helped the poor against the wishes of her husband. The annual celebration is a two-day event. On Saturday night, the community holds a dance and crown the queen and princesses of the festival. Sunday morning is the parade and feast.

After 50+ years, I finally saw my first Portuguese Festival Parade. Festival queens and princesses from surrounding communities also joined in with Hollister's own. The parade marched up  7th Street to Monterey Street to 5th Street and then down to Sacred Heart Church.

The Festival Queen and her Court of Hollister

To learn more about the local Portuguese festival, check out these new articles from the local newspapers:

Friday, May 21, 2010

Last Days at French's

It's your last chance to shop for kitchen linen, candles, lotions, glassware, and other high-quality kitchen and bath items at French's Kitchen and Bath and Collectibles and Gifts on the corner of 5th and East streets. Still need a reference? It's across the street from Whiskey Creek Saloon and kitty corner to the old post office.

After 14 years in business, the owner has decided to call it quits. She's ready, she told us yesterday, to move on and do other things she has been wanting to do.  I'm happy for her, but also sad that the husband and I won't have a convenient place to purchase fun one-of-a-kind gifts at reasonable prices anymore. 

French's will stay open until June 1. Over half of her shop is already gone, including the fixtures. As of yesterday, all food items, such as spices, BBQ rubs, jams, teas, and cookies, are 70 percent off. Everything else is 50 percent off.

I plan on heading back. Don't tell the husband.

P.S. No one paid me to tell you about this sale. Not that I wouldn't mind.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Hollister Farmers Market

The Hollister Farmers Market is every Wednesday, from 3 to 7 p.m, until the end of September!  Hooray! 

Farmers, orchardists, and other vendors will line Fifth Street, between San Benito and Monterey, so  bring your shopping bags and head on down for afternoon/early evening fun!  You might even think about having dinner down there as well. BBQ, hot dogs, enchiladas, and pies are some of the available offerings. Live music, too!  Tomorrow, (May 19), Jillian Shaw  will be singing on the lawn, while guitarists David Huboi and Vince Zuniga will be performing in front of City Hall.

Now, here's a list of Farmers Market vendors, thanks to Tammy Jackson, the Farmers Market Manager,  at the Hollister Downtown Association

Farmers and Other Agricultural Producers
  • Avila Farms: broccoli, cauliflower, beets, carrots, onions, potatoes, lettuce, zucchini, brussels sprouts, swiss chard, and green beans
  • Brays Apiaries: local raw honey
  • B and T Berry Co. LLC: blueberries and blackberries
  • Bay Fresh Produce: strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, beefsteak tomatoes
  • B and R Farms: dried apricots, chocolate covered apricots, apricot preserves, chili preserves, chutney, cinnamon spread-no sugar added, apricot topping, apricot red pepper topping, fresh Blenheim apricots
  • Cindi’s Country Produce: almonds, Fuji apples, Granny Smith apples, Meyer lemons, black figs, white figs, Indian Blood cling peaches, White Freestone peaches, Yellow Freestone peaches, Anjou Pears, Asian pears, Bartlett pears, Santa Rosa plums, bush and string beans, beets, carrots, corn, cucumber, eggplant, grapes, basil, oregano, snow peas, green onions, red and white radishes, crookneck squash, zucchini, beef master tomatoes and market pride tomatoes
  • Fairhaven Orchards: dried apricots, walnuts, cherries
  • Guerra Nut Shelling: walnuts, olive oil, almonds, wine
  • Global Mushrooms: portabella, crimini, white oyster, and white shiitake mushrooms
  • Hamada Farms: cherries, apricots, plums, pluots, nectarines, peaches, apricots, lemons, oranges, grapefruit, cucumbers, tomatoes, melons, eggplant, and grapes
  • HOG Farms: asparagus
  • Heirloom Organics: huge variety of greens, roots, potatoes, herbs, cucumbers, squash, tomatoes, and melons
  • Hain Ranch Organics: chicken, eggs, walnuts (all organic)
  • Bill Jurevich Farms: cherries and apricots
  • Lisa’s Farm: range-free natural eggs
  • McLellan Botanicals: live orchid plants
  • Morris Grassfed Beef: grass-fed beef in a variety of cuts
  • Northridge Farms: artichokes, broccoli, cauliflower, and strawberries
  • Phil Foster Ranches/Pinnacle Organic: beans, beets, broccoli, bok choy, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, chard, cucumber, garlic, cilantro, fennel, leeks, lettuce, onions, parsley, peas, potatoes, shallots, zucchini, strawberries, tomatoes, turnips, celery, water melon, winter  squash, sweet corn, cherries, apples, peppers, figs, and basil
  • Resendiz Farms: peaches, cherries, tomatoes, apricots, onions, nectarines, plums, pluots, and grapes
  • Ruvalcaba Nursery: fresh-cut flowers
  • Swank Farms Produce Inc: cherries, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, several varieties of homemade salsa, pepper, garlic, squash, sweet corn, and apricots
  • Terry Farms: peaches, nectarines, pluots, cherries, almonds, walnuts, tomatoes, grapes, and apples
  • Vasquez Farms: strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries
  • Vierra Gardens: live potted plants
Crafts and Other Vendors
  • Bounce House
  • Bell Hill: goat’s milk soap and lotions, soap nets, laundry soap, cards, rugs, and looms
  • Foxhollow Herb Farm: lavender soaps and lotions, salves, dried lavender bunches, sachets, essential oils, massage oils
  • Felton Farm Soaps: hand-made soaps
  • Harvesting Solutions: quick-start worm farm kits, nature’s wonder worm castings, foliage liquid, and tea bags
  • Pink Petal: purses and shirts
  • Silpada Jewelry: sterling silver jewelry
  • Timber and Textiles: home accessories, fabric, jewelry, hats, and straw bags
  • Tupperware
  • Vista Notes: cards, calendars, and framed photos
Food Vendors
  • Cedar House: pies, French bread, pound cakes, cookies 
  • Casa De Fruta: fresh fruit pies, caramel apples, cookies, cotton candy, caramel corn, taffy, dried fruits, nuts, candy fudge, danishes, rice krispy squares 
  • Damm Good Water: Outlaw cookies, milk, and water 
  • Dave’s Dawghouse: hot dogs, chili dogs, polish dogs, chips, sodas, hot links, spicy onion dogs, and water 
  • Gold Rush Kettle Korn: kettle korn 
  • Lily’s Fresh Fruit: fresh cut fruit, horchata, melons, jamaica, snow cones, drinks, and flour chips
  • Maria Elena Mexican Food: Mexican tortas, flautas, sopes 
  • Mansmith’s BBQ LLC: smoked meats, tri tip sandwiches, bread, sodas, and water 
  • Mariscos San Juan: shrimp, octopus, or mixed cocktails, tostadas of ceviche, shrimp tacos, and oysters in their shell 
  • Michelle’s Golden Brown Bread: apricot, strawberry, blueberry, cranberry, sweet potato, banana, banana nut, zucchini, pineapple, date and bread pudding bread loaves, cookies, brownies, and pies 
  • R Mexican Food: sodas, enchiladas, and pambosas
  • Ridgemark Golf and Country Club: several varieties of desserts 
  • S and S Jerky Sales: jerky, water, and soda 
  • Taqueria Albor: tacos with handmade tortillas 
  • Wolfsen’s Meat and Sausage Inc: assorted smoked sausages, marinated steaks, fresh steaks, chicken breasts, and dog bone treats



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