Last Straw Bistro replacing Chopz on Central Avenue

Ice cream and smoothies, plus sandwiches and salads, are going to be front and center at The Last Straw Bistro. which is opening on Central Avenue.

The new eatery is replacing Chopz at 426 Central.

Owner Mauri Novak said they’re going to be open Saturday for Cruisin’ the Drag with a limited menu for a sneak peak and then fully open for business on Monday.

Novak said Chopz closed last weekend after two years and they’re doing minor alterations to the interior and getting a new sign that should be up by the end of the week.

Great Falls named among top 100 places to live

“We’re very excited about this next phase,” Novak said.

He and the manager, Nicole Goza, are partners in the project and Novak said she had been instrumental in the idea and the transition to the new concept.

“We are featuring smoothies, really good healthy smoothies, not just the surgary sweet kind, though we’ll have plenty of that too,” he said.

Great Falls pedlet program gets national attention; pedlet season opens May 1 with new Pedlet Passport

“We were doing okay with Chopz, but we felt like we wanted more,” Novak said.

He said Last Straw Bistro isn’t a chain, but their own creation, and that they think it fits better with the unique offerings downtown.

Last Straw Bistro will serve Cascade Glacier Ice Cream from Eugene, Ore. and they’ll have about 12 flavors at any given time for cones, dishes, shakes and sundaes, Novak said.

Longtime friends opening Elevation 3330 in downtown Great Falls

Fresh fruit and vegetables will also be featured for smoothies, salads and sandwiches, he said.

The layout will change slightly with one of the sandwich lines moving to the back of the house where the sandwiches will be prepared off a new menu. The other will be shifted into the ice cream bar and salads.

Business Bites: The Block now open; The Barn renovating; Vietnamese restaurant coming

“This will fit in better with the rest of the stuff going on in the rest of the building, with what Enbar and The Block are doing,” Novak said. “I think it has a wide appeal.”

Chopz staff are staying with the new eatery and Novak said they’re looking to hire a few more part-time employees.