Remember HCK, the restaurant and bar short for Hermosa California Kitchen that used to be at Champlain Drive and Perrin Avenue?
It’s all grown up now with a new look and a new concept called Hyde & Vyne.
This is the business in the courtyard of the same shopping center as Five Restaurant. A few months back, HCK shut down for a month for a transformation. Hyde & Vyne restaurant and lounge reopened in its place with one of the same owners.
After 10 p.m., we turn into Hyde.
Lewis Everk, Jr., Hyde & Vyne
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Gone are the loud music, high tabletops and party vibe. They’ve been replaced with a small-plates restaurant that has an old-Hollywood feel with Frank Sinatra and Michael Bublé serenading diners through the speakers.
And here’s where the Jekyll and Hyde metaphor comes in. After 10 p.m. at Hyde and Vyne, the music goes up and lights go down for different atmosphere (but there’s no evil like in the novella).
The business is open 5 p.m. until 12:30 a.m. Tuesday through Thursdays. It stays open until 1:15 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. It also serves Sunday brunch. More on that in a moment.
The “vyne” refers to the wine on the menu, using the Y for name recognition on social media.
HCK was about three years old, but it was time for change, says owner Lewis Everk Jr., who is behind both places. The sports bar/restaurant category had a lot of competition on that end of town. When Dave & Buster’s began showing some of the same UFC fights and other sporting events as HCK, he decided to switch up the business rather than go head-to-head for the same customers.
Besides, Everk says, HCK never quite became what he envisioned. In part, that’s because three months after it opened he had a heart attack and was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, which he has since overcome. The experience made it a little easier to go straight for what he wanted, he says.
We’re no longer serving burgers and hot dogs.
Lewis Everk, Jr., Hyde & Vyne
He bought out his partners and got to work on Hyde & Vyne
“I threw everything away and started from scratch,” he says.
He created different staffs, one for dinner, one for the late-night cocktail lounge. And he transformed the look of the place, adding damask wallpaper, gray booths that seat four to eight people and video screens that show black and white images of years past in Fresno by local photographer Pop Laval.
Bottles at the bar are lit up in purple and peach lights and huge floral arrangements between booths.
The menu changed as well, swapping out burgers and hot dogs for steak and wine. It’s small plates of American steakhouse food designed to be shared, from the $12 pumpkin ravioli to the $26 grilled rib-eye.
“Even our steaks come out sliced so they’re ready to share,” Everk says.
A new cocktail menu includes drinks like The Gatsby, which is made with pear vodka and St. Germain liquer. It’s garnished with a sprig of rosemary set afire by the bartender.
Hyde & Vyne also serves a Sunday brunch buffet from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. For $29 for adults and $13 for kids, diners can opt for prime rib or honey ham, get an omelet from the omelet station, eggs, even dip goodies in a chocolate fountain.