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Yard House eyes Mimi’s for expansion 

Santa Clarita City Hall
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An official for Darden Restaurants, which owns and operates Yard House, confirmed recently a second application has been submitted for a bar-restaurant in the spot currently occupied by Mimi’s Cafe. 

The application filed in April with the city’s Planning Division came with a signed acknowledgement from the listed owner of the property, a limited liability company called IVT River Oaks Valencia. 

“The proposal is for demolition of existing Mimi’s Cafe and for the construction of (a) new Yard House Restaurant with a seasonal patio, lawn dining area and new trash enclosure,” according a one-stop application filed with the city of Santa Clarita. “Yard House will be replacing restaurant use so there is no change in use. The restaurant will be built within the same location.”  

The application filed in April by Darden’s for 24201 Magic Mountain Parkway follows one filed in December. 

Trisha Wulff, design development manager for Darden, said Thursday the latest application is very similar to the one filed last year by the company.  

She referred additional questions to the company’s media relations department, which had not responded as of this story’s publication. 

The parcel of land where the Yard House would sit is listed as a 20,000-square-foot lot with a building improvement of a little over 7,000 square feet, which currently houses Mimi’s. 

“There are minimal impacts to the existing site improvements in the shopping center,” according to the application. “The building was designed with site-specific modifications for this location.” 

The application was accompanied by a March 26 statement of acknowledgement from Michael Phillips, a representative for the property owner. 

Elisa Holden, general manager of Mimi’s Cafe in Valencia, said Thursday she had “no comment,” on any of the speculation regarding the location. 

“Mimi’s loves the community and the community loves Mimi’s,” Holden said Thursday afternoon inside the Valencia location. 

An email to the media relations address for Mimi’s Cafe bounced back Monday. An email to the company’s guest relations department was not responded to as of this story’s publication. There was no media phone number listed for the company’s corporate headquarters in Texas. 

Mimi’s opened at the location, which was formerly a Tony Roma’s, in 1998, promising Valencia a “taste of Bourbon Street,” according to a Signal article at the time covering its ribbon-cutting. 

Darden also owns and operates the brands Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse and Ruth’s Chris Steak House, as well. 

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