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Cheesecake Factory to open in Walnut Creek February 19

The popular nationwide chain that serves famous cheesecakes and other casual American classics opens its second East Bay suburban location.


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The Cheesecake Factory opened the doors of its new Walnut Creek location briefly Sunday afternoon to give crowds of cheesecake lovers and fans of its extensive, American classic casual menu a sneak peek at its new digs.

The nationwide chain will open its newest location in Walnut Creek's Plaza Escuela on February 19. The Cheesecake Factory has one other East Bay suburban location in Pleasanton.

Each restaurant features around 200 items on their menus, including more than two dozen kinds of cheesecake. Among the flavors: Godiva chocolate, dulche le leche caramel, peanut butter, oreo, cherry, key lime, Snickers bar, and, yes, low-carb (As if! What's the point?).

The new Walnut Creek location is said to include the nationwide restaurant chain's "distinctive decor," which includes Egyptian columns, dark cherry wood furniture, and brass accents. The Cheesecake Factory initially started out in 1947 as a small cheesecake shop in Detroit run by a housewife and mom named Evelyn Orton. Later, after her kids were grown, she and her husband, Oscar, moved to Los Angeles, where they started their cheesecake business. They were an instant success and now have around 150 restaurants across the country.

Walnut Creek city leaders are very excited about the arrival of the Cheesecake Factory. After all, it fills a big empty storefront in a prominent location in downtown, a warehouse-sized space across the street from the Century Walnut Creek 14 movie theater. This space has been empty for more than two years, since the upscale Andronico's grocery store closed.

The crowds checking out the restaurant Sunday afternoon seemed excited about its upcoming opening. My colleague, Managing Editor LeeAnne Jones, is also very excited. She has been talking up the Cheesecake Factory's Walnut Creek arrival for the past couple weeks. She lives in the Tri-Valley and sometimes braves the long wait to get a table at the Pleasanton location. She warned that long waits can be a part of the Cheesecake Factory experience. But she says it's worth it, and she is not even a fan of cheesecake—like me. (It is actually one of the few desserts that I don't have a hard time passing on, if you can believe that). She says she's never had a bad meal there.