Shop Talk | April 20, 2012 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Eating Out - April 20, 2012

Shop Talk

ASIAN STREET FOOD ON CAL AVE ... Will Pacio was an unlikely candidate for a chef. He had just graduated from Stanford with a pre-med degree, but wanted to try cooking. "I knocked on the back door of The Left Bank in Menlo Park and asked if I could work there for free. They said yes. So I did six months of shucking oysters, slicing onions and plating desserts," Pacio said. He was hooked. Pacio enrolled in culinary school, worked at several restaurants, and nearly two years ago opened Spice Kit in San Francisco. The success of the Asian street-food eatery led Pacio back to Palo Alto. His second Spice Kit restaurant is set to open at 340 S. California Ave. in early June in the former site of Culture Organic Frozen Yogurt. "I love Palo Alto. I have a lot of history here and I'm glad to be back," he said. The 25-seat restaurant, which will specialize in organic, locally grown produce, will offer hand-held street-food items. "We want to introduce people to more traditional Asian tastes, and we've looked for foods that translate well into American flavors," Pacio said. The restaurant will be open daily for lunch and dinner and will also serve Asian beer. Spice Kit is the second eatery in Palo Alto to offer Asian street food. Asian Box, which opened earlier this year in Town & Country Village, focuses on flavor and fresh, gluten-free ingredients with fast execution. Inspired by street stalls throughout Asia, CEO Frank Klein said, "I love Asian cuisine but have always found it challenging to find places offering fresh and authentic menus, especially in the fast-casual sector."

This story contains 606 words.

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Heard a rumor about your favorite store or business moving out, or in, down the block or across town? Daryl Savage will check it out. Email shoptalk@paweekly.com.

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