Zydeco is moving Downtown

I’ve long maintained that Zydeco is the best restaurant in Bend, and today the Bulletin breaks the news that Zydeco is moving downtown, to fill the former Volo location.

Zydeco will close its older restaurant April 1 and reopen downtown with a new five-year lease in early spring, said Steve Helt, co-owner with his wife, Cheri Brown Helt. The couple owns another downtown restaurant, 28, on the corner of Minnesota Avenue and Bond Street.

The new Zydeco will be 1,200 square feet larger than the old one, giving it a total of 4,000 square feet, Helt said. The restaurant has 18 employees but may grow over time, he added.

“We hope to put our own Zydeco flair to it,” he said. “I’m bringing my (employees and customers) with me.”

Zydeco’s lease terms were not released, but the deal will be structured to allow the restaurant to succeed during tough economic times, said Jeff Pickhardt, a partner in Hood River-based Cannery LLC, which owns the restaurant space. Pickhardt said the lease will have incentives on the front end and over time, but declined to give more details.

Good news all around, it sounds like. I have to admit, when I first heard about it (my wife had heard something about it on KTVZ one night about a week and a half ago, but I didn’t call to confirm), I was a bit ambivalent—they’ve established themselves solidly at their Third Street location and moving Downtown can only be more expensive—but it sounds like they’ve got things covered.

As long as they don’t change the menu or the service (which John Anderson here says "consistently has the best service of any restaurant in Central Oregon"), I think they’ll be hugely successful downtown.

Or at least, I’m crossing my fingers for them!