After temporary closures, we welcome two East Falls businesses back in operation – Johnny Manana’s whose opening 10 years ago at Ridge and Midvale launched the start of the restaurant scene that is still unfolding along the commercial corridor, and relative newcomer Falls Flowers, which has reopened at a new location.
Johnny Manana’s home of “the good, the bad, the burrito” and the signature giant chili pepper hanging outside, was forced to close in January when a water main break on Midvale flooded the basement and blew in part of a wall.
The closure had the upside of allowing time for much needed maintenance and repairs, which had been difficult to undertake in a restaurant open seven days a week.
Sean Ford, a chef consultant who specializes in restaurant restarts has been engaged to work up a new menu, secure and train staff, and re-energize the business.
Sean said his first priority was to cut back to a simple menu of classic Mexican dishes where everything is made fresh every day – fajitas, quesadillas, burritos, chimichangas and enchiladas along with taco platters, guacamole, tostadoes and nachos. The corn chips are made by hand, and there is now a $3.99 menu for kids.
The restaurant has been busy since it re-opened. Plans are to slowly grow the menu to include more entries and possibly expand into the empty adjacent storefront on Midvale.
Falls Flowers, which opened in October 2009 at the Marketplace at East Falls, has been closed for several months while renovations were underway at 3421 Conrad Street (formerly Falls Pharmacy).
Re-opening just last month, owner Peicha Chang says she has been gratified by the many former customers and new neighbors who have stopped by to shop and visit.
In addition to cut flowers and made-to-order arrangements, Peica offers custom designed arrangements and delivery for events ranging from small private parties to weddings.
Peicha believes in being a green business. She buys locally as much as possible, composts all of her clippings and chooses accessory products such as candles, cards, chocolates and containers that are organic or sustainability produced.
Additionally, Peicha plans to carry locally made items such as soaps from Indian Queen Soaps and jewelry from Modern Bird Jewelry by local artisan Laura Flavin.
Hours at the new location are Mon. through Sat. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m, extended to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays.