Fresno - Saturday lunch?
Hello, Cali Hounds
A group of East Bay Slow Fooders will be in Fresno around Saturday lunch time, and I'd like to compile a list of lunch options for them. We will actually be in Del Rey, but anything in the general vicinity, open for Saturday lunch (from hole-in-the-walls to sit downs) would be appreciated. I see there's been some board discussion of Basque food, which sounds great. Anything to add?
David "Mas" Masumoto is a peach of a guy (sorry), his Sunday columns in the Fresno Bee provide an insight into the life and history of the central valley and agriculture in central California that are up there with the likes of Saroyan and Steinbeck. Check out his books.
Best bets for a road trip (assuming you're looking for something easily accessible along the way) would be the Old Basque Hotel at Fresno & F Sts. (just off the Hwy 99 Fresno exit, N toward downtown). This is hearty, family style fare, might want to call and make sure they're serving lunch on Sat.
Another local landmark would be the original Sal's in Selma, the favorites here are the Fancy Burrito (ask for it basted) or the Karl's Special (braised rib meat) Burrito (already basted iirc, but I always ask for extra). The rest of the menu is solid, but those two items are stellar! Returning to the main street that you exit Hwy 99 from in Selma (2nd?), heading north it becomes McCall Ave. and a couple of miles will put you in the area of Lincoln and American Aves. with Del Rey proper just to the east.
Two other options would be exit Manning Ave. east before Selma and head to Reedley, again call to make sure they're serving lunch, but Jon's Bear Club is an institution (more of a steak/seafood/bar dinner type spot) and the Garden Gourmet Deli that was a pioneer for CA cuisine, local fresh ingredients a couple of decades ago. Sorry, but haven't been able to get back there in a while, so maybe other hounds have a more recent take, don't let the "Deli" in the name fool you, they are much more. From Reedley, you'd have to backtrack a few miles to McCall and head north to Del Rey (not far, maybe 10 min.). There's much more available, but from the description you give of your group I thought these might be the most interesting. Let us know if you have additional wants and needs. And by all means, be sure and report back, have a great trip.