Olive Branch after-hours offers monthly entertainment

The Olive Branch, located at 215 South Second St., sells breakfast and lunch entrees along with several restaurante-specific coffee blends for patrons. In the evenings, the café caters events. Jed Dean | Lariat Photo Editor

Last semester, the Baylor Lariat featured The Olive Branch. Read the article here.

By David McLain
Staff Writer

One downtown restaurant will be regularly opening its doors past closing time for a monthly event, beginning this week.

The Olive Branch Bakery & Café is starting a series of various by-reservation events every third Thursday of the month.

This Thursday, the café’s special event will feature a gourmet picnic served during a showing of the film “When Harry Met Sally.”

Leah Stewart, owner of the Olive Branch, is providing an event to complement the City of Waco’s efforts to bring more life to downtown.

“It is something fun that I get to do that is different than what I do every day, and it gives us an opportunity to stretch our creative cooking skills a little bit and offer some entertainment downtown,” Stewart said.

Each reservation includes a basket with a three-course meal intended for two, whether or not the actual party comprises more than two individuals.

It will include an appetizer, entrée, dessert and drink. A $65 reservation covers the meal as well as the price of seeing the movie.

“We’re striving to put on fun and unique events to give folks something different to do with their evenings,” said Bonnie Berger, Olive Branch marketing director.

A large screen will be positioned in the front entry room of the restaurant for the movie that evening. Tables will be set up in between the drink fountains and the movie screen.

“We will have staff here passing out the baskets,” Stewart said. “It will be dark, so we will keep drinks refilled as we can. Every basket will have a bottle of sparkling lemonade in it, so they can refill it as they need during the movie.”

Stewart has plans to continue these Triple Treat Thursdays, as she calls the event.

The coming months include plans for a murder mystery dinner and a dessert buffet.

The cost will vary each month depending on the specific event.

“I just want to create something for people to do, a reason to be down here, since downtown is really trying to grow,” Stewart said. “I’ve got a fantastic chef as my business partner and he does great things, and I have fun cooking, and its just fun to stretch things a little bit.”

The heart of this venture, as well as the mission of the restaurant itself, lies within its owner.

Stewart’s view of connection between food and fellowship is evident.

“You get to know people over food and I really like that concept of being able to bridge the gap between people,” Stewart said in an April 2011 interview.