Stirling Bridges food

FARE: Stirling Bridges serves British favorites as well as other cultural cuisine

The Sacramento area is about to raise a pint for the new British gastropub opening in Kimco’s Madison Plaza this weekend, Stirling Bridges. Owner Andy Wylie, who hails from Scotland, is ushering in a new take on the British gastropub experience with his Carmichael, Calif., restaurant.

Stirling Bridges is located in the space once occupied by another British pub, Brother Oliver’s, which was an iconic restaurant for the area up until its closing in 2008. The space is reformatted and structurally reconditioned to include a dining area, a 50-foot bar crafted from river rock, TVs playing sports games, and a meeting area with a fireplace and TV. The TV can be used for presentations, but when it’s off, the screen becomes a mirror. The old Brother Oliver’s sign adorns the interior to keep a piece of the historic Sacramento staple alive.

Stirling Bridges bar

ROCK OUT: River rock adorns Stirling Bridges’ signature 50-foot bar

Stirling Bridges is advancing one of the most popular restaurant trends today, the gastropub. Derived from “gastronomy” and “pub,” gastropubs launched in the U.K. in 1991 when pubs, which served only beer, began offering high-quality British fare to reignite the struggling restaurant scene. The winning combination was contagious. Gastropubs hit the U.S. in the 2004 with the opening of The Spotted Pig in Manhattan, and they remain one of the biggest culinary trends today with their emphasis on an upscale food, beer, and cocktail selection.

Stirling Bridges will be serving 15 signature British cocktails, with names such as The Sherlock, Strawberry Fields, and Mick Jagger. The menu ranges from traditional British epicurean delights, such as bangers and mash and fish and chips, but takes a few leaps into other cuisine as well with offerings such as rib-eye steak, fresh salads, and Italian pizzas baked in an oven that cooks the pies to perfection in just three minutes.

Stirling Bridges pool table

GOOD SPORT: Customers can get a mix of a pub, dining, and sports bar experience at Stirling Bridges

British gastropubs have become Andy’s sweet spot. He and his business partner also started the popular British gastropub Streets of London in Midtown Sacramento. They thought they would “open a pub and have a laugh,” as Andy told us. But Streets of London became more successful than they thought, and grew into three locations as the Sacramento area improved and became more populated.

Andy was ready to move on to a new concept, however, and sold his ownership in Streets of London to open Stirling Bridges. But the lessons he’s learned in attracting patrons to a brand-new area will carry over as he builds a fresh customer base for Stirling Bridges.

Andy told us much more about his plans for Stirling Bridges, what he’s learned about opening and running restaurants, and how he sees Stirling Bridges impacting the Sacramento area. Tune it to listen to our podcast with him, or read the transcript.

  • 1:20 How Andy is feeling about the grand opening
  • 1:51 Sneak peek into grand opening plans
  • 2:50 The features of Stirling Bridges
  • 4:27 Food and drinks offered at Stirling Bridges
  • 6:08 About Stirling Bridges’ executive chef
  • 7:07 Target customer base for Stirling Bridges
  • 8:09 Why Andy moved from Streets of London to Stirling Bridges
  • 9:23 Where the name “Stirling Bridges” comes from
  • 10:23 Lessons Andy has learned from his Streets of London experience
  • 12:07 How Stirling Bridges is remembering Brother Oliver’s
  • 13:12 Events coming up for Stirling Bridges
  • 14:26 How Andy is using Facebook to promote Stirling Bridges

You can like Stirling Bridges on Facebook to stay in the loop on its progress. Best of luck, Andy!

This has been an installment of StoreFront, an interview series with leaders of successful retail businesses. For more interviews, visit the StoreFront page. To learn how you can be featured, email us. We’d love to hear from you.

  • CATEGORY: Storefront
  • DATE: Thursday, July 25, 2013