Office Hours

Hauser's Chef in the Forest within two weeks or reopening after fire

An electrical fire one year ago destroyed Hauser’s Chef in the Forest Restaurant. It’s taken nearly 12 months to put the pieces back together.

Owners Debbie Mustered and her mother, Jo Davis, say their intimate and rustic-feeling dining location will reopen soon, depending on when they get an occupancy permit.
“We’re hoping by Dec. 22,” said Mustered.

Fans of the restaurant will see the same building, friendly service and menu. “The big changes are inside,” said Mustered. The rearrangement of walls and the bathroom opens the seating area and provides more natural light. Plus the restaurant has added a gas fireplace to cheer the place up.  Photo above is by staff photographer Kathy Plonka.

“We’ve used lighter wood, and with the windows, the whole place feels brighter,” she added.
Mustered and Davis are the fourth set of Chef owners. The restaurant, at 12008 North Woodland Beach Dr., opened in 1977. For more, read the rest of the post below:

Total restoration cost came to $350,000, with insurance covering all of that.
Before, the restaurant served diners on two floors; the remodel consolidated all 18 tables on the main floor. “Our servers are really happy we did that,” Mustered said.

The interior of roughly 2,200 square feet will also feel a little more organized, she said, as the contractors have squared up the exterior walls to remove the slight irregularities the building had.

Chef in the Forest will serve dinners Wednesday and Thursday, 5:30 p.m. to close; and Friday through Sunday, 5 p.m. to close. To find out when it opens, call (208) 773-3654.

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Tom Sowa
Tom Sowa covers technology, retail and economic development and writes the Office Hours blog.




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