Published in the September 13 – September 26, 2017 issue of Morgan Hill Life

Do you remember the liquor store that once sat on the corner of Monterey and Third Street in downtown Morgan Hill? After that business closed its doors, the lot sat empty for several years waiting for a developer to come and transform it into something special.

The site became a convenient location for the Morgan Hill Downtown Association to hold events like its Farmer’s Market and Thursday Night Music. With the work of city staff, MHDA, city council and numerous private citizens donating time and money, this became the first location of our beloved pop-up park. For the past year, it has been the construction site of a well-known group of Bay Area restaurants.

If you’re a foodie, you’re going to love what they’re bringing to the downtown dining experience. This prime location will be graced by four restaurants that serve different types of food, each eatery offering its own unique ambiance. This quartet of cuisine is expected to open for customers in January 2018. They’re projected to provide about 65 new jobs in downtown Morgan Hill.

The best known is Opa! Authentic Greek Cuisine. Its Mediterranean food has been craved by South Bay area food lovers for almost a decade. Opa! has restaurants in seven of the best Silicon Valley neighborhoods including Willow Glen, Los Gatos and Palo Alto. Opa! has two new locations coming next year in Santa Clara and Morgan Hill.

Willard Hicks is sure to be a popular destination for carnivores in this cluster. They offer an elevated experience with handcrafted cocktails, five signature steaks and other unique dishes. Willard Hicks’s only other location is in downtown Campbell.

If you’re obsessed with taco trucks, Tac-oh! Mexican Comfort Food will feed your need. Combining a south-of-the-border menu with lush, hand-crafted cocktails in a fashionable atmosphere, Tac-oh! will compliment the rest of our downtown dining options. Tac-oh! already has two other locations in Willow Glen and downtown San Jose.

What I believe will be the most popular of the group with families is Mo’s Breakfast + Burger Joint. This eatery offers straightforward American-style comfort food including “big breakfast, bigger burgers and biggest beers,” according to their website. Whatever your liking, they serve it all day. And they have a kids’ menu and casual ambiance to meet after a soccer game. Morgan Hill will be Mo’s third location following their successful Campbell and Almaden venues.
As our downtown evolves, we’re seeing dead space turning into beautiful new dining destinations to attract food lovers from all around the Bay Area.

These four new eateries say a lot about how other communities perceive Morgan Hill. We have a special place here, and I’m proud that exceptional businesses want to invest in and enhance our downtown experience for everyone.

Nancy Reynolds

Nancy Reynolds

Nancy Reynolds is a member of the Morgan Hill Downtown Association’s board of directors. She wrote this column for Morgan Hill Life.
Nancy Reynolds