Santa Clarita Valley food aficionados will soon be able to treat themselves to Woofer burgers, DUI Fries and Turkey Bird sandwiches.
Archibald’s Drive-Thru, a California original born in Ontario in 2000 that’s working now to increase its visibility, will open its seventh Golden State location this summer in the West Creek Village shopping center that’s sprouting at the corner of Copper Hill and Rio Norte in Valencia.
The newest development in the burgeoning West Hills area and less than a mile from the Albertsons-anchored Tesoro Village, West Creek Village will also include a Circle K convenience store and gas station and the SCV’s third Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, plus the area’s second Oakmont senior care and assisted living center. A fourth retail pad remains available.
A new player on the local dining scene, Archibald’s is often mistaken as a fast-food joint, said Shawn Grijalva, the company’s marketing director, but is more accurately a “hybrid” restaurant that offers sit-down dining, fresh and quality food ingredients, and a sporty atmosphere complete with an array of flat-screen TVs and a full range of beer and wine offerings.
“We do have a drive-thru but we are not fast food,” Grijalva told The Signal. “We’re not your larger restaurants like Chili’s or Buffalo Wild Wings but we feel like we provide a Chili’s or Buffalo Wild Wings experience in a smaller footprint.”
The restaurant’s menu features a variety of fast-casual favorites — from burgers stacked with cheese, bacon, pastrami and avocado to bacon-wrapped hot dogs with grilled onions and green peppers to “South of the Border” options including tacos, burritos and nachos.
And, Archibald’s has its own variant of DUI (Dining Under the Influence) Fries, an increasingly popular name for amped-up chili cheese fries. This version is piled with bacon, carne asada and pastrami.
“They’re amazing,” Grijalva promised. “It’s definitely a signature item, a fan favorite.”
Archibald’s features an all-day breakfast menu, too, with a variety of sandwiches, burritos and omelettes, as well as pancakes and waffles.
While Archibald’s has “always been wanting to tap into the L.A. area,” said Omar E. Roman, the company’s general manager of operations, the restaurant wasn’t in the earliest plans for West Creek Village but eventually secured the spot in the project set aside for El Pollo Loco.
In addition to its initial foray into Los Angeles County, Archibald’s is working on a new location in Chino and exploring out-of-state possibilities, with Roman naming St. George, Utah, as one likely destination.
The Facebook group Santa Clarita Foodies generally lamented El Pollo Loco’s false start following a post this week by Bryant Huang that shared a link to the website of Fountainhead Development, the Newport Beach-based company leading the project.
“Dang it!!! Bring back El Pollo Loco!” wrote Nicole Bacon.
“I apologize in advance if this is a dumb idea … but can we circulate an online petition for an El Polo Loco in the area?” Brian Hollenbaugh posted. “Maybe with enough support, they will consider the area?”
Some Santa Clarita Foodies expressed concerns about potential traffic complications in a heavily residential area that includes nearly 23,000 households within a three-mile radius, according to Fountainhead site plans, as well as possible impacts on property values with the introduction of what one commenter, Jason Eminian, described as “low-end substructures and businesses.”
“And lights and sirens will increase between the traffic accidents, the shoplifting, and loitering that is sure to come with a gas station and a beer and wine license,” Michael D. Gattuso wrote.
The project’s broker, Bill Gilmore of Coldwell Banker, told The Signal that he did not have permission to address media inquiries. Fountainhead did not return phone and email requests this week.
The two-story, 85,000-square-foot Oakmont facility will include 40 Assisted Living and 50 Memory Care apartment homes, according to Andi Johnson, communications director for Oakmont Management Group. It is scheduled to open in early 2019.
Fountainhead is currently developing eight similar statewide projects – including the final phase of Rancho Vista Gateway in Palmdale, a shopping center along Rancho Vista Boulevard and Lowes Drive that includes Aldi, Chick-fil-A, Krispy Kreme and Pizza Rev.
Anaheim-based KDC Construction is building West Creek Village.