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National Steak Chain Reopens in Fresno After $700,000 Upgrade



Sizzler has renovated its northwest Fresno restaurant. (GV Wire/David Taub)
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The northwest Fresno Sizzler restaurant may have only been closed for a month for renovation, but the western U.S. chain invested $700,000 for its reopening.

“We believe in Fresno. Honestly … we’ve been here many decades. And we think with a new look and a more of a focus on the food … hand-cut choice steaks, that we really have a place here in Fresno,” said Robert Clark, chief growth officer for Sizzler. “We’re invested in in this community for sure. We want to be here.”

The renovation includes new flooring, tables, bathrooms an upgraded salad bar, a new beverage station, and brownies in the dessert bar.

Corporate Sizzler — based in Orange County — recently bought the franchise back from its franchisee, the Reese family. Fresno was the second location to undergo modifications; Visalia, which it also bought from the Reeses, is next.

The menu at Sizzler remains largely the same — steaks, seafood, salads.

Sizzler is best known for its steak (above, 14 ounce rib eye for $24.49 with sautéed onions for an extra $2.29) and seafood (below, six jumbo crispy shrimp for $11.99). (GV Wire/David Taub)

Surviving in the New Restaurant World

“We’re invested in in this community for sure. We want to be here.”Sizzler’s Robert Clark

Sizzler is not affected by a new California law that will raise the minimum wage for most fast food restaurants to $20 an hour. But that doesn’t mean it won’t feel the pressure.

“There’s no question about that. I think what we offer our team members is a wide variety of different jobs … We want to create opportunities for people,” Clark said.

Several other national chains serving similar food — Texas Roadhouse, Buffalo Wild Wings, Outback Steakhouse —are within blocks of Sizzler (3121 W. Shaw Avenue, west of Marks Avenue).

Clark says price and variety set them apart.

“There’s something for everybody. So if you if you want that steak experience, we can we can definitely offer that. If you want something lighter, quicker, you can have a salad bar or you can have both for that matter,” Clark said.

The business model — order up front and have servers bring out the food — also helps keep prices down, Clark said.

“Sizzler invented fast casual,” Clark said. “That’s really our competitive advantage, is that we can manage our labor better by having the guest order at the counter. Come get a seat. And there’s labor savings in that for us.”

The unlimited salad bar (above, $15.29 or $7.49 with entrée) now includes brownies (below). (GV Wire/David Taub)

Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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