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Davis

Davis, California

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Downtown location reinvents itself as tequila bar

Third time’s a charm – at least that’s what the owners at Agave Restaurant and Tequila Bar are hoping.

The restaurant venue on 217 E St. in the heart of downtown Davis has been in constant flux during the past few years. Earlier this month, the location transformed once again.

Last fall, the fine dining restaurant and bar, Soga’s, became 21 and Seven Bar and Grill by Chaat Café. At night the Indian café became Club 21 and Seven, bumping dance music and mixing drinks until the wee hours of the morning.

But on Oct. 9, Club 21 and Seven left as quickly as it came when Agave Restaurant and Tequila Bar opened its doors.

“My whole idea was to bring back the class,” said Adrian Blanco, Agave’s marketing consultant. Blanco is the manager of de Luna Jewelers, located down the street from Agave.

Soga’s was an upscale restaurant and club, while 21 and Seven was geared toward the student crowd. One of the remaining owners of 21 and Seven Bar and Grill by Chaat Café, Aamit Chowdhurry, is now onboard with Agave and is aiming to bring back the original reputation of the location.

“[Chowdhurry’s] passion is food,” Blanco said. “And we were remembering how nice Soga’s was and thought, ‘why not bring that back?'”

Agave is bringing back casual fine dining. It now offers Peruvian-influenced food by head chef Eduardo Fierro and over 50 types of tequila, with the help of tequila connoisseur Joe “Tequila Joe” Horrigan.

“It’s a place you want to go on a date,” Blanco said. “And we want this to be a place people can come.”

Open until 2 a.m. on weekends, Agave still plans to attract the Davis nightlife.

“We are trying to focus more on food and make it a lounge,” Blanco said.

Club 21 and Seven endured some setbacks to its reputation this September after bar patrons broke out in a fight which ended in gunshots. No injuries were reported. The owners said the incident did not fit in with the Davis vibe and consequently sought to reinvent the place.

Joey Urbanic, a 2009 UCD alumnus, used to party at Club 21 and Seven but thinks the idea behind Agave will work just as well on E Street – without the fights.

“It’ll be good to have something new and nice in downtown Davis,” Urbanic said.

Joy Cohan, Davis Downtown Business Association director, said the idea behind a tequila bar is something new and exciting for downtown Davis – like a wine bar with a twist.

“Agave is a welcomed addition to downtown Davis and we have high hopes for the restaurant to restore the reputation on E Street for quality restaurants,” she said.

SASHA LEKACH can be reached at city@theaggie.org.

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