ROBAII REINVENTED ... It wasn't easy for Dar Nafar, owner of Robaii Falafel and Persian, a 12-year-old restaurant that closed in 2010, to find a location for his new venture. "For two years, I was looking for opportunities and studying my options," he said. His persistence paid off, and Nafar opened Thyme to Eat at 448 University Ave. in Palo Alto on Oct. 6. It replaces Hyderabad House, which closed earlier this year. Nafar said his new restaurant, although a little more upscale, is a continuation of the old Robaii, which was on the corner of Hamilton Avenue and Cowper Street. "I've missed my customers. I always hoped to return to Palo Alto," he said. Nafar has created a more extensive menu at Thyme to Eat. New items include vegan and gluten-free options, along with a few beverages such as Chia Rose Water Fresca and Sekanjeh Bean, a concoction of vinegar syrup and Persian-cucumber puree.
PIAZZA ADDITION DELAYED ... The 4,000-square-foot expansion project for Piazza Fine Foods in Palo Alto's Charleston Center that will dramatically increase the size of its cheese shop is in full swing, but taking longer than expected. Initial projections had pegged the opening for Oct. 1. "A small portion will open the first week in November; the rest will open in early January," assistant store manager Mike de Jesus said.