Noshing Around

New: Sachiko Restaurant

Now open in its third location, Sachiko occupies the space formerly filled by short-lived Sushi World and blink-and-you-missed-it Bloo Fish, at 1800 E. Fort Lowell Road, Suite 116. Let's hope this Japanese and sushi eatery stays around for awhile; 321-4000.

New: Produce Corral

Also at 1800 E. Fort Lowell Road, just two doors west of Sachiko in Suite 100, is the Produce Corral, featuring an array of fresh fruits and vegetables, Mama Llama empanadas and Roma Imports products. Open for less than a month, the Corral will close for a short time to install a juice/smoothie bar but will reopen soon; 319-2900.

Viva La France!

A few months ago when Chef Laurent Reux announced Le Bistro was closing on Dec. 31, New Year's Eve reservations began pouring in. After a successful 15-year stint, Reux is ready for some rest and relaxation. He wants everyone to know that he will be back doing private catering and cooking classes, so consider it until you meet again.

Bar Hopping

Elle, a wine country restaurant, features a half-price bar menu daily from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. There's an interesting selection, including fried brie with spiced green apple chutney and roasted garlic cloves, a grilled steak sandwich, antipasti and bountiful cheese platters, at 3048 E. Broadway Blvd.; 327-0500.

Chopped 2

Chopped will open a second location next to Trader Joe's on Campbell Avenue at Limberlost Drive. It will have patio seating and be pet friendly. They anticipate a March 2006 opening, but considering they're dealing with permits, inspections and contractors, it could be May instead.

Tiny Bubbles

We asked Mark Thompson of Plaza Liquors to make a few champagne recommendations. He said, "You can't go wrong with Schramsberg Mirabelle for $12.99, or for a more decadent selection choose Perrier Jouet grand brut at $30." Plaza Liquors will be open until 9 p.m. on New Year's Eve at 2642 N. Campbell Ave.; 327-0452.

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