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Panera Bread Coming to Ventura?

6th November 2010

When I moved here from Dallas four years ago, one of the things I missed was the Panera Bread just down the street from my house.  I enjoyed going early in the morning for coffee and danish, and I would stop there for lunch often because of the free WiFi.  Even though it’s a big chain it actually fit in well in our neighborhood.

It’s been years since I thought about that place, so imagine my surprise when I saw the Panera logo while sitting in Camarillo traffic on the 101.  At last!  I could get that great Caprese panini close to home, and hopefully recapture that feeling I missed from Dallas.  The sandwich was good, but no such luck on that latter part.  This Panera is a completely different vibe from my old neighborhood gathering spot:  Noisy and packed to the rim with tank-top wearing outlet mall patrons. It wasn’t pretty… kind of like being on a flight into or out of Orlando in the summer.

Just as I was losing hope I noticed this on the back of the menu:  “Coming soon to Ventura!”  How great would that be?  I know that there are a lot of people here who are very anti-chain restaurant and I understand that.  But a consistently well-managed Panera would be awesome.  It fits that huge gap we have between Jim & Rob’s Fresh Grill and Brooks for an everyday, no-brainer meal when you don’t feel like cooking.  Hopefully they’ll put it behind the mall next to the new Trader Joe’s that’s going in… If you have any info about where it’s going please comment and let us know!

I enjoy writing about technology, travel, wine and living in Ventura, CA.


  • Nicole
    Posted at 6:54 pm January 1, 2011
    Reply Author

    well i work for panera in ventura, and live in oxnard. and we are currently training the new manager for either santa barbara or ventura what ever opens first thats where he is going, and i was confirmed last week ventura is opening i think in april. im so excited something a little more closer to home=]

    • admin
      Posted at 7:58 pm January 2, 2011
      Reply Author

      Hi Nicole,
      Thanks for the info. Please let me know when you find out where the Ventura store will be… I’m hoping it will be somewhere near the new Trader Joe’s behind the mall.

  • Cody Sayre
    Posted at 6:24 pm May 10, 2011
    Cody Sayre
    Reply Author

    Any idea where this will be?

  • Brenda
    Posted at 4:19 pm June 20, 2011
    Reply Author

    It will be where Applebee’s used to be, in the Kohl’s shopping center.

    • admin
      Posted at 5:07 pm June 20, 2011
      Reply Author

      Thanks Brenda. I saw that Panera bread “now hiring” sign in the window the other day and was about to update the site. I wonder how Urbane Cafe is taking the news?

  • KathyMeza
    Posted at 3:36 am August 9, 2011
    Reply Author

    I also saw the “now hiring” sign in the window. I can’t wait till it opens. I started eating at Panera bread about 5 years ago. They have one near my daughters home in Oceanside. I went with her and a group of her girlfriends, the ambiance is great!! The food even better!!

    • Nicci
      Posted at 3:03 pm September 12, 2011
      Reply Author

      I am currently being trained to be a trainer for the Ventura store, and we are being told that the first week of october is D Day! 🙂