Wednesday, January 21, 2009

KBís looks for a new home in Ketchum

Express Staff Writer

Marta Poma, a cook at KBís in Ketchum, prepares tacos at the popular Mexican restaurant. With his lease coming up in March, owner Brian Kriesien is looking for a new space in Ketchum to relocate the eatery Photo by Willy Cook

After 15 years at its current location, Ketchum institution KB's will need to find new walls to plaster with photographs from around the world.

Brian Kriesien, owner of the Mexican restaurant KB's, or Ketchum Burritos, in Ketchum and Hailey, said that come March he will be closing the doors of his northern store with plans to reopen elsewhere in town by the beginning of summer.

Kriesien said the restaurant was originally opened at its current location on the corner of Washington Avenue and Sixth Street in 1993. But with his lease on the building running out at the end of March, Kriesien said he has been out hunting for alternative spaces that could work for the restaurant.

Alain Gilot, owner and chef of the adjacent Bistro 44, said he will create a new wine bar in the space.

"Initially I was really bummed out that this was happening and we wouldn't be able to stay. It's like home there," Kriesien said. "But now I see this as an opportunity to move into a space that serves our customers better."

Kriesien said he has looked at about 10 possible locations, but that none of them "jumped out" at him. Because of the restaurant's extensive take-out business, he said he's looking for a space with better parking, but also close to the center of town.

"I have learned a lot about what isn't a good location," Kriesien said, referring to his experience operating a KB's in Boise, which closed six months ago after being open for about two years.

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