Eating Out: Peeve's Public House specializes in all things local

The Fresno BeeSeptember 16, 2013 

The much-anticipated Peeve's Public House & Local Market is open on the Fulton Mall.

Locavores, downtown supporters, craft beer lovers and coffee fiends have been awaiting this reincarnation of the former Fresno Brewing Company at 1243 Fulton Mall.

As you may recall, the owner of the Fresno Brewing Company closed it for personal reasons this summer. Shortly after, the city's business development director and all-around downtown booster left his government job to make Peeve's his full-time gig.

The result is a coffee shop, bar and restaurant with a "hyper local" focus. Peeve, by the way, is Scharton's dog ("pet peeve," get it?). The local market isn't open yet, but more on that later.

First, let's talk about the food. Peeve's serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, coffee and dozens of kinds of craft beer.

The goal is to be as local as possible.

For example, the smoothie Scharton was making in the kitchen Monday had nectarines from the Masumoto family farm in Del Rey, kale from Kristina's Natural Ranch Market and Fresno state grapes and watermelon.

A limited menu will change almost daily. For lunch Monday it was the "Rooshin" sandwich, a Renna's Meat Market recipe for a German sausage with sauerkraut from the chef behind RawFresno.com.

Peeve's will serve chilled soups during summer — like the Fresno State sweet corn chowder — and hot soups in winter.

They're serious when they say "local" here. The coffee comes from local roaster Lanna Coffee and the tea from Raizana Teas, but it goes further than that. Peeve's is identifying local flour millers, even finding someplace local to make the T-shirts it will print its logo on.

Guest chefs will come in about once every two weeks to serve a special dinner. The first, this Friday, Peeve's is billing as "the Dusty family," otherwise known as Dustin and Kristin Stewart who run Dusty Buns.

The dinner costs $35, with two seatings at 6 and 7:30 p.m. with live music. Reservations are a must for these dinners because seating is limited. Make them by emailing peevespub@gmail.com.

The market, which will be in a narrow space next to the dining area, should be up and running in about six weeks. There, Scharton plans to sell local food products, such as P*DE*Q's little Brazilian cheese bread balls and Ooh de Lolli's ice pops.

A Kickstarter.com campaign will start soon to help raise money to pay for shelves, refrigerators and freezers.

Peeve's looks a lot different than it did previously, with a lightened up paint job and lots of reclaimed wood in the floors and chair rails, and a big new table.

The business is still bike friendly, meaning you're welcome to park your bike inside.

You can keep tabs on Peeve's at Facebook.com/peeves, on Twitter at @peevespub, and on Instagram at peevespublichouse. Hours 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday, closed on Sundays.

Taste of the Town

In other food-centric events this weekend, you can experience an Arabian Night in downtown Reedley (11th and G streets) at the Taste of the Town event from 6:30-9 p.m. Thursday.

Sample food and drink from more than 30 restaurants, wineries and breweries.

There will be belly dancing performances, a photo booth and downtown buildings will be lit up with multicolored lights.

Tickets cost $30 in advance and $35 at the door, and are available at several downtown Reedley retailers and online at reedleydowntown.com.

Harvest Moon

Kingsburg's Harvest Moon Jazz festival starts at 5 p.m. Saturday on Draper Street downtown. This festival welcomes in fall and has a little bit of everything.

There's a rib dinner under the stars from Jonathan's restaurant. Crayfish chowder will be available for sale as restaurants compete for the title of Crayfish Chowder Champion, a nod to the former Crayfish and Jazz festival event. There also will be jazz music and a competition for the biggest pumpkin, if pumpkin harvest times cooperate.

The event is free.

Details: kingsburg-chamber-of-commerce.org.

The columnist can be reached at (559) 441-6431, bclough@fresnobee.com or @BethanyClough on Twitter. Read her blog on fresnobeehive.com.

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