Customers at the wildly popular Tahoe Park restaurant regularly wait more than an hour for fluffy pancakes and decadent lunch options, and Zoellin doesn’t want his crew to face that kind of rush as they figure out how to navigate their new digs. The 3839 J St. location will open the last week of January barring any problems during the final inspection, Zoellin said, but he declined to give a set date.
“I want to give my team settle into that space, and we can’t really do that when there’s a line down the block,” Zoellin said.
Bacon & Butter is nearly finished moving into what used to be Formoli’s Bistro, where owner-chef Aimal Formoli’s whiskey burger was considered a contender for the best hamburger in town. Formoli closed his 11-year-old namesake restaurant last April after being announced as the head chef at Solomon’s Delicatessen, which opened in Davis in May 2018 and is expected to open in downtown Sacramento sometime this year.
A Sacramento native, Zoellin worked in landmark local kitchens such as Mulvaney’s B&L and Biba’s prior to venturing out on his own in 2012. He had a moment in the spotlight feeding “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” host Guy Fieri at the Golden Bear in 2011, then opened Bacon & Butter inside what’s now Midtown Barfly before moving the business to Tahoe Park.
The new Bacon & Butter will have a takeaway counter for baked goods and 2,600 total square feet to work with, Zoellin said. He hopes to open a third restaurant down the road, but will decide when and how to grow once J Street location becomes “normal,” he said.