By DOUGLAS W. MOTLEY
The long-awaited grand opening of Osorio Brother’s Restaurant (formerly the Original Cottage) located at 26545 Highway 18 in the heart of Rimforest lured some 50 persons on Monday, March 27.
“Pretty good for a new business that no one ever heard of,” reckoned Armando Osorio, half-owner of the new business.
Armando, who got his start in the restaurant business at the age of 15 when he was hired as a busboy and dishwasher at a Japanese sushi bar in El Monte, was later hired at an Italian restaurant in San Bernardino, where he started out bussing tables and ended up cooking.
After moving to the mountain, Armando was hired to work at Woody’s Boat House in Lake Arrowhead Village. “I started out cooking and worked my way up to become the host and, eventually, I became the manager, until I moved over to the Bear House, which had gone through about a half-dozen owners, some of whom ended up in bankruptcy. In 2012, I finally was able to buy the business from the previous owner.”
Osorio Brother’s, which specializes in burgers and pizza, also has an array of appetizers, hot and cold sandwiches and salads, as well as a selection of side orders, beverages and a kid’s menu. Armando, along with his brother, Esteban, also owns and operates the Bear House Family Restaurant in Crestline.
On our visit to the new restaurant on Monday, March 27, our party of three ordered a bacon cheeseburger, served with French fries, pickles, tomatoes, onions and lettuce; a club sandwich with French fries; and teriyaki chicken, consisting of a char-broiled, skinless chicken breast covered with teriyaki sauce, Swiss cheese and mushrooms. All three of us agreed that our dinner selections were mouth-watering, generous servings.
Because we arrived at 7:15 p.m., the restaurant, which is open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., wasn’t crowded, which made for prompt service from our server, Kassidy Nicholson, who is a Rim High School graduate from the Class of 2019. She was courteous, friendly and willing to engage in conversation with us.
A couple seated nearby were enjoying pizza and a roast beef sandwich. Diana Karch ordered a Hawaiian pizza covered with pineapple and ham, while her friend, Sharon Snyder, ordered a roast beef sandwich with Ortega chilies, Swiss cheese and grilled onions. Karch and Snyder, who both reside in Lake Arrowhead, had been regular customers of The Cottage, until it closed last December.
Armando, who we already knew from being regular customers of the Bear House, was complimented on the remodeling of the former Cottage. He said he and his brother did all of the remodeling work themselves. The interior is painted white, with bright blue trim and shiny, blue, padded seats in each booth.
“Business was absolutely great today,” Armando said, noting that most people ordered either pizza or burgers.
He added he is considering adding new menu items such as tacos and various types of pasta and soup in the near future and that he is considering adding breakfast in the fall.
For more information about Osorio Brother’s Restaurant, or to order a take-out meal, call (909) 744-9808.