How does a sushi burrito sound? A candy apple coated with spicy-sweet chamoy? Persian food?
You’ll soon be able to get all these at Sierra Vista Mall in Clovis. The mall has a flurry of businesses offering diverse and creative foods opening this year in the outdoor portion of the mall.
A few are already open, like that candy apple seller, Chocolate Wishes & Treats, which opened earlier this year selling all kinds of candy and baked goods. Teazer World Tea Market also opened its first Clovis location earlier this month.
There are still plenty of vacancies inside Sierra Vista Mall, which was foreclosed upon and sold at public auction in 2015.
But in recent years, the mall has focused on its newer outdoor portion. Like many malls nationwide, it is relying on not just shopping, but experiences to survive.
Those range from dining out to playing at No Surrender Laser Tag and the MB2 Raceway’s indoor go-karting. Or maybe getting a treat from a tea or candy shop before or after a movie or the mall’s summer concert series.
Here’s a rundown of what’s recently opened and what’s coming soon at the east end of the Sierra Vista Mall:
Tea and dessert
Teazer World Tea Market at Sierra Vista Mall opened in early June.
The interior of the shop is something quite different for Clovis. Walls are painted in bright purples and yellows. A spiral staircase winds up to a second story. The place is chock full of artsy details.
That second story isn’t finished yet. But when it is, it will be open for seating for customers and available to rent for special events like bridal or baby showers.
The tea shop now has four locations in the area (that includes the original in the Tower District, one in River Park, and one on West Shaw Avenue near Marks Avenue).
Like the other locations, this Teazer has 108 teas available. That includes teas like oolong, green, white, herbal, floral and fruit teas. With caffeine or without, the teas can be made hot or iced. In the same way Starbucks blends various flavors in its drinks, Teazers also combines flavors to make drinks like an iced “tango mango” lime tea.
It also sells loose tea to brew at home.
The Sierra Vista Mall location will have a few more desserts than its other locations, including slices of cake like red velvet cake, and baklava, scones, several types of cheesecake, and a brown butter cake served with ice cream.
Customers have been asking the local chain to open a location in Clovis, said owner Ann Liao .
“We have very nice customers coming in,” she said. “They say they’ve been waiting for a long time.”
Poke and burritos
Poke Bowl-Rrito is a restaurant that’s coming soon to a building at the mall facing Shaw Avenue, next to Chipotle. It’s not open yet, though the owner is shooting for a mid-to-late July opening.
The restaurant will blend Japanese sushi, Mexican-style burritos and Hawaiian poke bowls.
Poke (technically pronounced Poh-KAY, though most people here call it POH-kee) is the Hawaiian-inspired dish of raw bite-size pieces of tuna or other fish served in a bowl and piled high with toppings. Here, you can also get cooked proteins like chicken, shrimp and crab, and choose bases like sushi rice, mixed greens or quinoa.
You can get all those things in a bowl, or in a wrap.
The sushi burritos come with ingredients wrapped up in a seaweed wrap, or a soy wrap, which is similar but without the seaweed taste, said area manager Melissa Anaya.
“We really do focus on the healthier side,” she said, adding that the restaurant offers gluten-free sauces.
And it’s not the only Poke Bowl-Rrito around. The same owners recently bought Chop Chop, a poke restaurant in Hanford. It’s being remodeled into a Poke Bowl-Rrito. Salinas is also getting one.
One thing that makes the Clovis restaurant different: It will have selfie walls. These are walls with murals or signs designed to have your picture taken in front of it and shared on social media.
Here, there will be a pair of wings customers can pose in front of. They’ll also be able to share a photo with “#ilikeitraw” written on the wall, a playful reference to the raw tuna.
A new restaurant is taking over a space near Big Kahuna Frozen Yogurt, the one that was formerly home to FRI Pountinerie and Poki Poutine (poutine is that Canadian dish of French fries, cheese curds and gravy).
A Persian restaurant called Tah Deeg Authentic Persian Cuisine is set to open any day now.
Details are slim but the interior of the restaurant has had an upgrade to give it a more upscale feel. We’ll share more when the restaurant opens.
Japanese restaurant Sakura Chaya has had a location at First Street and Nees Avenue for years. It will remain open, but a second location has opened at Sierra Vista Mall, between the movie theater and the indoor portion of the mall.
Like its sister restaurant, this location specializes in three types of Japanese cuisine: sushi, teppanyaki and traditional food.
The teppanyaki is very popular, said general manger David Wong. This is where diners sit around a grill and a chef cooks their food in something that borders on performance art, with lots of flames and tricks.
A patio for outdoor dining is also in the works.
The inside of the restaurant is elaborately decorated in shades a pink, a link to Japanese cherry blossoms.
Cake and candy apples
Chocolate Wishes and Treats opened in February near the theater.
This locally-owned business is part bakery, candy shop and ice cream shop.
Launched by a former Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory franchisee and a woman who had a thriving home-based cake business, Rachel Makes More Cake, the shop sells all kinds of sweet things.
That includes cakes (both by the slice and whole ones), cupcakes, strawberry pizza and a whole slew of chocolate candies, from truffles to chocolate-dipped honeycomb candy.
The candy apples are a popular seller. They can be dipped in chamoy, of course, or caramel, chocolate and other goodies. The apples can be given as gifts, and often have seasonal themes, like graduation or Mother’s Day.