October 4, 2006
Ernesto's Staying Put

One of Sacramento's better situated and more historic restaurant sites has been dark since the end of May, with no prospects for a new tenant soon. For 45 years, the sprawling brick building along Folsom Boulevard near Alhambra Boulevard had housed the Rosemount Grill, and since 1990 Andiamo.

When Andiamo owner Barbara Mikacich decided to ease back on her work schedule this past spring - she's still active in her family's other Alhambra Boulevard restaurant, the Limelight - she leased the old Rosemount facility to Ernesto Jimenez so he could relocate his immensely popular Ernesto's Mexican restaurant from 16th and S.

Those plans now are dead, however. Jimenez says he wasn't able to line up the estimated $4 million he needed to buy and remodel the Folsom Boulevard facility. "It's really sad," remarked Jimenez, noting he had high hopes for the move and already had spent a bundle on architectural plans. Small Business Administration funds he needed to underwrite the project, however, just weren't materializing. "I can't say enough about how patient and nice the Mikacich family has been with us."

Barbara Mikacich says she is entertaining other offers for the site, none of which is close enough to finalization to make any sort of announcement. "Anything can happen, but we know for sure it isn’t going to be Ernesto’s," she remarked.

Ernesto's, meanwhile, will stay put, says Jimenez, who also owns the Mexican restaurants Zocalo and Tortugas in Sacramento and is a partner in the recently opened Mas in Roseville.

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