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Business notebook

Area Chinese food lovers are eagerly awaiting the opening of Asian Buffet at 3106 E. Lincolnway.
Area Chinese food lovers are eagerly awaiting the opening of Asian Buffet at 3106 E. Lincolnway.

Asian Buffet gets soda fountains

STERLING – I have spotted movement at the Asian Buffet.

A van and truck, both with Coca-Cola logos, and a white pickup were parked Jan. 11 at the restaurant-to-be at 3106 E. Lincolnway.

A man who identified himself as a Coca-Cola employee but declined to give his name said the restaurant was getting two soda fountain machines. He didn’t know when it will open.

I asked owner Mike Wei earlier this month when he plans to open, and he said “sometime this year.” Which he said in 2011, and in 2012. The restaurant originally was expected to open in April 2010.

Wei’s also now dealing with the aftermath of a Dec. 12 fire that closed his Rock Falls restaurant, First Wok, at 1110 First Ave. He declined to say when it might reopen.

Fiesta Cancun in Sterling might open next month

STERLING – So, what’s the deal with Fiesta Cancun?

The opening date of the Fiesta Cancun Authentic Mexican Restaurant in Sterling is the second-most-common question I get from readers, after When will Asian Buffet open?

Fiesta Cancun in Sterling might open soon.

Eduardo Torres, who manages the Fiesta Cancun in Freeport, which is under the same ownership, said Monday that the owner hopes to open the Sterling eatery next month.

The Sterling restaurant’s management has not yet returned an application to Sterling requesting a liquor license, Sterling City Clerk Marie Rombouts said.

Sterling has not yet issued an occupancy permit for the restaurant at 3203 E. Lincolnway, said Hilda Thielen, code enforcement secretary.

The city did issue a permit in late June to All-State Restaurant Equipment, so it could install an exhaust hood, Thielen said.

Dixon Fiesta Cancun is open under new owner

DIXON – Meanwhile in Dixon, Fiesta Cancun at 200 Keul Road opened Nov. 6 under new ownership, manager Felix Palma said.

The Dixon restaurant is now owned by Alfredo Luna of Dubuque, Iowa, Palma said. Luna also owns several other restaurants, including a Fiesta Cancun in Dubuque.

The Dixon restaurant is open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday. Call 815-284-0881.

Tobacco Road changes name, changes offerings

STERLING – Tobacco Road is now The Warehouse.

The store at 20 E. Third St. still sells cigarettes and tobacco, and now also is selling more estate items, said owner Joseph Juarez, 41, of Rock Falls.

He also is accepting items for consignment; his cut will be 30 percent of the sale price, Juarez said.

The store has been buying unclaimed estate items and selling them, mostly on the Internet, for months, but he’s now bringing more of them into the shop for sale, Juarez said.

The store no longer carries adult movies.

The Warehouse is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Find “Joe Knows” on Facebook or call 815-632-3649 to learn more.

Distinctive Gardens teams up with Crystal Cork for pavilion rentals

DIXON – Distinctive Gardens will team up with Crystal Cork to offer package deals for those wanting to rent Gardens’ pavilion and serve liquor to guests.

The Cork has a mobile bar that may be set up at the garden center’s pavilion.

“The whole objective is to make it as easy as possible to rent the pavilion,” said Lisa Higby LeFevre, co-owner of Distinctive Gardens.

Renters will be provided a checklist and helped if they need tables, chairs, linens or alcohol, she said.

Higby LeFevre hopes the packages will be ready by spring for those wanting to rent the pavilion for June. Prices have not been set yet, she said.

Call Distinctive Gardens, 815-285-0014, or Crystal Cork, 815-440-4969, for more information.

All-Safe ships

DIXON – All-Safe Storage, 690 Timber Creek Road, now offers UPS shipping services and shipping materials along with its storage business.

Shipping services provided include ground, next-day air, second-day air, 3-day select, international and freight.

Call 815-285-2212 for more information.

Have a business tip? Let us know. Email SVM reporters Bridget Flynn, or Derek Barichello,, or call 800-798-4085, ext. 521 or 526.

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