.’Stock Rising

A fresh and ambitious remodel for Woodstock’s Pizza debuts this week

The original plan was modest enough. Then minor went major, and suddenly Woodstock’s Santa Cruz (710 Front St., Santa Cruz) is ready to party like it’s 2025.

“We called it a refresh, but in this case it’s more than a refresh,” co-owner Laura Ambrose says. “We decided once we got started to redo everything.”

There was already a lot to like about the downtown pillar, which reopens in time for graduation weekend this Friday.

Those include the fact that Laura’s husband, Jeff, started out as a delivery guy; employees can join a stock ownership program; and rare late-night hours and rarer $9 pitchers of beer (weekdays after 9pm) are in play too.

Now there’s more to like, including a four-sided bar with a fresh cocktail program and full liquor capacities, a brand-new kitchen, new arcade, new restrooms, enhanced front patio, new back patio, new sound system, new giant TV, and new interior Santa Cruz mural.

The food, though, will remain long on quality and comfort, from the Woody’s Waui pizza to the Tree Hugger salad to the Pogonip veggie sandwich, set against an eye-catching backdrop.

“It’s the same great menu, we’re not changing the food itself,” Laura Ambrose says. “I hope people will be excited by the new look. When visitors have wandered in that’s the first thing they notice, and they say, ‘Oh my god, this is cool.’” woodstockscruz.com


Santa Cruz native and accomplished chef Mikey Adams has worked at some high-wattage spots, including now-departed Restaurant 1833 in Monterey, Shimo Modern Steak in Healdsburg and a bunch of San Francisco spots, including One Market, St. Regis Hotel, Proper and seafood-driven/live-fire-friendly Angler on the Embarcadero, where he helped it keep a Michelin star. But the dream was always to return home and cook at a Surf City restaurant. Now that’s been realized with his hiring to help Alderwood (155 Walnut Ave., Santa Cruz)—which reopens 5-9pm Wednesday through Sunday starting this Friday, June 14—re-galvanize its glory, with lots of wood-fired fish. “I’m stoked to collaborate with local producers to bring their finest to our kitchen,” he says. alderwoodsantacruz.com.

GO SWIMMINGLY Trout Farm Inn (7701 E. Zayante Road, Felton) is doing a fun outdoor dining-concert evening overlooking Zayante Creek Friday, June 15, with local wine, beer or cider and passed hors d’oeuvres, then dinner by Chef Sebastian Nobile and a live concert by John Craigie. That fits into a nice—and summer-friendly—lineup of ongoing activities like 9am-2pm Saturday-Sunday brunch, 11am-5pm daily pool deck-social club fun, 3-5pm weekday happy hours and 10am Sunday yoga. Anyone up for a little yoga + swim + brunch? thetroutfarm.com…Another summer adventure idea: Head south, because Big Sur is back open—Highway 1 is safe to navigate, and the stoplight system shuttles people south and north with surprising speed. Meanwhile destinations like Deetjen’s Big Sur Inn, Nepenthe, Esalen and brand new The Village are as magical as ever, dishing seasonal and well-sourced foodstuffs to rival the rampant natural wonders…Take it away Virginia Woolf: “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well,” she once noted, “if one has not dined well.”


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