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News Fit to Eat
June, 2023 - Issue #221
At the SCV's farmers markets, it's easy to look at the mounds of vegetables and think, "Hmm, I could do that." You are wrong, especially at this time of year. Apart from some cherry tomatoes and citrus, Clarita's homeowners rarely succeed in the endeavor of urban farming. The sun annihilates life, or your dog tramples your veggies or the HOA fines you $300 for an unauthorized eggplant. Luckily, we have found other ways to feed ourselves. And with all of the summer barbecues, weddings and long lazy dinners that lie ahead, it's worth thinking about what we'll be putting into our collective stomachs.

"There's only so much that restaurant owners can do, especially considering that MANY LOCAL SPOTS ARE FAMILY OWNED and security cameras haven't been deterrent enough. So let's keep supporting our local businesses.
Get that extra appetizer."
Restaurants Targeted
If you DoorDashed Pad Thai or some spicy tuna rolls this past April, you probably didn't notice anything amiss. But if you visited any of a number of local restaurants in person, you might have had to step across a patched door or noticed repairs underway. Brazen thieves struck many Santa Clarita spots over just a few nights. Facebook groups commiserated about break-ins at Life Thai Fusion, Achita Sushi and El Cubano. SCV Instagram pages added Charm Thai Kitchen, Kinza Sushi and China Wok to the list, including a video that showed at least three individuals breaking through a glass door to steal money and electronics from a restaurant.
As of this writing, there wasn't much additional information on the break-ins. Given that many happened in such a short time frame, a direct connection seems likely. Elsewhere in LA County, some restaurants like HomeState in Sherman Oaks have responded to recent repeated thefts by going cashless. There's only so much that restaurant owners can do, especially considering that many local spots are family-owned and security cameras haven't been deterrent enough. So let's keep supporting our local businesses. Get that extra appetizer.

Hangry Moments
The Santa Clarita food scene gets mixed coverage in the broader media landscape. Over at LA Eater, writer Sean Malin continues his quixotic quest to hype Santa Clarita's offerings. His most recent piece described Newhall's many wine options, boldly proclaiming its aspiration as "LA's Secret New Wine Destination." Even if that lofty title is debatable, no one can doubt the sheer volume of wine being consumed nightly - and sometimes daily - in Santa Clarita.
A less flattering, far "hangrier" side of the SCV recently went viral in a video showing a brawl in line for In-N-Out. A woman throws her drink at the car behind her; two boys hurl water back; there's a tense, yelling stand-off as fellow patrons try to intervene. It's a deeply-triggering mirror held up to this otherwise fair valley. Why do so many of us wait in frustrating lines, pushed dangerously close to lashing out, just for a hamburger? Why is it more satisfying to throw our beverage at another vehicle than to drink it? And are we so over-hydrated that we have multiple drinks ready to throw while waiting in line for yet more drinks? (I write smugly, thinking of what's for lunch.)

An Emerging Foodscape
Big change is coming to Santa Clarita. New Urban West Inc. announced major development plans for the newly-clean and buildable Whittaker-Bermite site. Perchlorate contamination? Don't know her! In statements to The Signal, City Hall responded with, roughly paraphrased, "You might wanna run that by us first." Down the road, Shadowbox Studios wants to build over 1 million square feet of sound stages and facilities along Railroad Avenue.
Perhaps most critically for Santa Clarita food, Town Center is set to change. According to Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, all Westfield malls are being sold. In an attempt to shepherd continuity, the City of Santa Clarita announced a public open house for a "Town Center Specific Plan." The region of interest includes the former Sheriff's Station, the mall and more. A flyer asks residents to "reimagine" the area: "What activities and uses would you like to see in a new Town Center?" If I may be so bold as to speak for the community at large, keep the food because we all heart eating in the SCV - the other details are negotiable.
This column is intended as satire and a (sometimes successful) attempt at humor. Suggestions and catty comments intended for the author can be e-mailed to iheartscv@insidescv.com.
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