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Horseshoe Bar's Alexander brings local California flavor

Restaurant owner hopes to introduce cooking classes, culinary shop
By: Joyia Emard, Loomis News Staff Writer
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Chef Vincent Paul Alexander has a following and the success of his restaurant, Alexander’s Horseshoe Bar Grill, shows it. “You have to have emotion, passion, behind the food,” said Alexander, who has been a chef for 20 years. Training at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and working for Wolfgang Puck and Hubert Keller, two of the founding chefs of California cuisine, have given Alexander the skills and talent to create flavorful dishes. Alexander said he serves meals that are California French and include the bounty of the area – locally grown ingredients and easily found ethnic spices and produce. The talented chef said he likes the quaint, small-town feel of Loomis and hopes to expand his business to include a cooking school on site and a culinary shop. He said he has always been passionate about cooking and envisions a presentation-style kitchen with mirrors where he can hold classes for the general public. He also would like to find the time to write a cookbook. “I feel like I have at least one cookbook in me,” Alexander said. The Horseshoe Bar Grill menu changes seasonally to take advantage of what’s fresh. His current entrée choices include beef Wellington, sautéed duck breast, pan-seared ahi tuna, and grilled Atlantic salmon. All entrees include soup or salad, intermezzo, house-made bread and chocolate-covered strawberries. It is not just the food that sets his restaurant apart, Alexander said, but also a casual, continental-style service his staff presents. Alexander said he likes his restaurant’s Loomis location it’s freeway close and yet feels like a destination. “Coming to Loomis takes you to a different place,” Alexander said. Taking over the Horseshoe Bar Grill has been like coming home for the restaurateur. Five years ago, he was the head chef for both the Horseshoe Bar Grill and Beerman’s in Lincoln. H latere served as the education manager for Cordon Bleu Sacramento, formerly the Kitchen Academy. Alexander’s children Cassandra, 22, and Ryan, 16, both work at Horseshoe Bar Grill. Ryan is learning the ropes in the kitchen while Casandra is a food server. “I’ve been working in restaurants since I was in high school. I started as a dishwasher at a coffee shop,” Alexander said. “It’s very hard work. You really have to want to work at it,” he said. Alexander was a partner at Slocum House restaurant in Fair Oaks, he opened the Meritage in Folsom, and prior to opening Alexander’s he was head chef at the Firehouse in Old Sacramento. ----------------------------- ALEXANDER'S HORSESHOE BAR GRILL What: American bistro serving lunch and dinner Address: 3645 Taylor Road Owner: Chef Vincent Paul Alexander Hours: Lunch served 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday through Friday; dinner served 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday, and 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday; bar open 4 p.m. to close on Tuesday through Sunday. Reservations: 652-4100