Vickie Breslin had the option of leaving Los Altos when First & Main Sports Lounge closed months ago. She had worked at the sports bar for eight years and had several places to land throughout the region.
Breslin, however, wanted to stay. She signed a lease for the old First & Main location at 397 Main St. in April and is now the owner/operator of The Post, a new bar and restaurant moving into the historical Copeland Building.
“I’ve spent so much time building relationships here,” she said. “Why go to Palo Alto or Redwood City?”
Breslin said she had “an inside track” on the location after years behind the bar. But that does not mean the same bar will be there when The Post opens its familiar doors. Breslin is overseeing a renovation and expansion that includes the space next door, previously occupied by Estatements.
“The whole way the restaurant will be configured will be completely different,” she said.
Breslin is collaborating with The Midglen Studio, which worked on Milagros in Redwood City and Town in San Carlos, to create what she said is a “modern, rustic feel” for The Post that will celebrate the building’s history as the former Los Altos Post Office. The Copeland Building, built circa 1911, is on the list of Los Altos Historic Landmarks.
“They’ve almost gone down to the shell,” Breslin said. “We’re giving it a new look from the ground up.”
Breslin attributes her near-decade in Los Altos with giving her the confidence that The Post will succeed.
“Because I spent nearly eight years at First & Main, I was able to take in what people wanted,” she said. “The goal is a community restaurant where you can unwind.”
She described The Post’s menu as “comfort food that makes you feel good,” an approachable take on responsibly sourced food. A 16-stool bar will stand separate from the dining room.
Breslin hopes that using the entire first floor of the Copeland Building will enable The Post to give local residents a Los Altos-centric place to celebrate.
“Adding the extra space means we’ll be able to do lots of events,” she said. “We are offering a premier space that’s done really well.”
Such major renovations take time. The Post is shooting for an opening in early autumn, but that could change if the aging building is hiding peculiarities that must be brought up to code.
An investor who wished to remain anonymous exercised caution about the space.
“It’s an old building that needs to be updated in order to be worthwhile,” he said. “We are still peeling it back, so we are not sure what they’ll find.”
Breslin noted that having local investors with the patience to renovate a historical building was a huge benefit to her plans.
“The investors are all locals who want to see a great spot in Los Altos,” she said. “It’s important to raise capital from the community.”
Until she can welcome people through The Post’s doors, Breslin is hitting the streets and gathering feedback on what Los Altos residents want from a downtown spot.
“I make it a point to be in Los Altos and hear what people want to see,” she said.
She believes this is the best way to keep Los Altos customers happy in a familiar downtown location.
“I want to please people,” she said. “We want to see it thrive in the way the community wants to see.”
Breslin is already planning to cater events through the summer and refine The Post’s menu so that she can have customers lined up when she opens.
“I think I can put something together that the community will really enjoy,” she said. “People are already asking, ‘When can I book my first event?’”