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Frozen Waffle-Maker Eggo Is Being Fined $85K for Releasing Toxic Gas at Its San Jose Factory

Plus, there’s a new second-story restaurant coming to Cow Hollow

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Lauren Saria is the editor of Eater SF and has been writing about food, drinks, and restaurants for more than a decade.

On Friday, December 9 the Santa Clara County District Attorney announced frozen waffle tycoon the Eggo Company will have to pay thousands of dollars in fines after the company released toxic and potentially deadly gas into the air around its San Jose factory. The incident occurred in January 2021. “A subcontractor on a scissor lift damaged a pipe that began leaking anhydrous ammonia, a toxic gas that can cause severe injury or death,” the district attorney’s announcement reads. Managers at the factory also waited more than an hour to report the leak — they incorrectly believed they’d already stopped it — ultimately leading to more than 3,400 pounds of anhydrous ammonia being spewed into the air around the factory.

Although no injuries were reported in relation to the accident, residents in the surrounding neighborhood were forced to shelter in place for several hours. USA Today reports that OSHA considers ammonia to be “a high health hazard” and that exposure to the gas, which is used at the San Jose factory to freeze waffles, can cause “burns, frostbite, lung irritation and corrosion damage to the eyes, throat, stomach and other parts of the body, depending on the type of exposure.” The company told USAT in a statement that since the leak it has “worked to improve the factory’s processes and protocols.”

There’s a restaurant moving in over this century-old bar

According to reporting from San Francisco Business Times, there’s a new restaurant opening next year in the space above essential Cow Hollow bar Bus Stop Saloon. Called Left Door, the restaurant comes from building owner Joseph Wallace, who plans to install some 36 seats and a full bar.

Celebrate Mel’s Drive-In’s anniversary with deep discounts

San Francisco-born diner chain Mel’s is celebrating its 75th anniversary today, Wednesday, December 14, by offering 75 percent off all classic menu items, per SFGATE. There are four locations of Mel’s around San Francisco (plus an additional four in Southern California) so hit one today for $2.07 milkshakes and $4.25 burgers.

Petit Crenn’s dining room is back open! Kind of.

Per a post on Instagram, top chef Dominique Crenn will finally welcome guests back into the dining room at Petit Crenn — sort of. The restaurant, which has been dark for going on three years now, will reopen for a pop-up called Crenn Essentials that’s being operated in partnership with Capital One. As such, Capital One cardholders will get first access to the series, which runs January 6 through 28 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Tickets for the public will be released tomorrow, December 15.

Omnivore Books got a charming new mural

There’s a sweet new mural up at Noe Valley’s Omnivore Books. Artist Josue Rojas completed the piece this week: