Weekly Market Report – January 26, 2023

Jan 26, 2023 | 0 comments

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Restaurant & Retail Updates

Two new restaurant concepts are coming to the Trio building at 15th & Farnam Street. Renovation on the historic structure is nearing completion. A new health-oriented restaurant called “Untamed Kitchen” and a yet-to-be named upscale coffee shop will open sometime this year. The existing Jimmy John’s will remain. The building’s upper floors will have 18 apartment units, which will be ready for occupancy in a few months.

Hay Jays, a new breakfast-and-lunch concept, plans to open next fall inside a 3,000 sq. ft. space at a new, three-tenant retail building near 156th & State Street. Hay Jays’ owners operate a Midtown coffee shop and have another once coming soon to the 38th & Dodge Street area.

Maple 88 Mexican Kitchen plans to open soon at 88th & Maple Street. The new restaurant’s menu is not yet published, but social media indicate the restaurant will have, among other things, Mexican seafood, birria tacos and Ramen birria.

Four Omaha chefs have been nominated as semifinalists for the James Beard Award, according to the Omaha World-Herald. David Utterback of Yoshitomo and Paul and Jessica Urban of Block 16 were nominated in the “Best Chef: Midwest” category. Kane Adkisson of kano was nominated in the “emerging chef” category.

Steak and Ale, the casual-dining chain known for its Tudor-style decor and affordable steaks, is coming out of retirement, according to Restaurant Business. Kansas-based Endeavor Properties will open the new Steak and Ale in suburban Minneapolis, part of a 15-unit area development agreement. In addition to Minnesota, Endeavor is targeting Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and the Dakotas.

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The “Restaurant & Retail Updates” section is sponsored by Anderson Convenience Market, featuring Quality AMOCO Fuels and serving Omaha since 1952, and proud to announce the return of Quality Amoco Fuels. Look for changes this Summer at Anderson Convenience Market – 8 Omaha area locations!

Learn more about Anderson Convenience market at www.Anderson1952.com

Grow Omaha Eats with
Sarah Baker Hansen

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Review: At the tiny Phyl’s Deli, the pastrami is the real deal (and so is everything else)

By Sarah Baker Hansen

Phyl’s Deli, which opened last April in the Old Market, is tiny. Its menu is small, too – fewer than a dozen sandwiches, one soup, bagels and lox and a couple of homestyle Jewish specialties.

But what’s not small at all are the enormous piles of meat that co-owner and chef Craig Hoffman piles carefully between slices of locally homemade bread, each one topped with a specific, no-substitutions combination of thoughtfully selected cheeses and condiments.

Trust me when I say I don’t think you should substitute anything here, anyway. Hoffman knows what he’s doing at this New York-style Jewish deli. No need to mess with this kind of expert edit, pared down but just right.

A lot of things stuck me as I ate through every sandwich on Phyl’s menu over the past couple of weeks. For example: A thick spread of European butter on the Paris ham sandwich. The crisp-crunchy edges of Hoffman’s deeply flavorful, house made pastrami.

The beauty of a stack of roasted balsamic-tinged vegetables topped with tomato confit. The rosy hue of perfectly medium rare roast beef folded over and over inside the aptly named “Beast” sandwich.

Am I going on? Yes, kind of. But when there isn’t a single misstep, I get inspired.

Let’s take a closer look at that Pastrami, which Hoffman makes in house and that he said is a week-long process for each batch. He secures each brisket, then brines, trims and rubs it with his signature rub before smoking each one. He then slices the meat thick and piles it on his signature light rye bread — made exclusively for the deli by the Lithuanian Bakery in Omaha — then tops it with a thick slice of Swiss, a house-made Oatmeal stout grainy mustard and caramelized onion. He grills the whole thing, resulting in a warm, melty, spicy, crispy masterpiece. I can’t think of a thing that would make it better.

Hoffman said periodically the deli will run out of pastrami (it’s quite popular) and though he feels bad telling people the shop is out, he also said it’s not all bad.

“It keeps generating interest, and it keeps customers coming back,” he said. “It is the thing we hang our hat on.”

As soon as Hoffman saw the Old Market spot where Phyl’s is located, formerly Ahmad’s, at 1006 Howard, he knew it was the spot.

“It just screamed ‘New York hole-in-the-wall’,” he said. “The kinds of places I had fallen in love with (while living in New York.)”

He also knew right away that he was meant to open a deli.

“There were no real delis in Omaha,” he said. “Or a severe shortage of delis.”

Hoffman grew up in Omaha, graduated from school, moved to New York, among other places, then moved back, eventually attending culinary school at the Metropolitan Community College Institute for the Culinary Arts. That launched his career — and made him friends like Block 16’s Paul and Jessica Urban, this week nominated for their first James Beard Semifinalist award, and Au Courant’s Ben Maides, another past Beard nominee.

“I don’t think Phyl’s happens without a Block 16 or an Au Courant,” he said. “All those are people I went to school with and worked with and they convinced me that this is doable. I was lucky to be in such great company.”

Hoffman intentionally kept the menu at Phyl’s (which is named after his grandmother, Phyllis) small. It’s smart.

I liked every single one of his sandwiches, but the jambon beurre is especially good. Sliced Paris ham — one of my favorites — is topped with a slice of Fontina and spicy arugula, then a Lithuanian bakery roll gets a thick spread of European butter and Hoffman puts it all together. Butter is an ingredient I don’t often see on sandwiches; at Phyl’s, it shines. It appears again on the decadent Little Italy, where Hoffman uses that same locally baked roll and that same spread of butter, but this time includes hot capicola, soppressata and fontina, making it a salami lover’s dream.

There’s surprising care put into two of what I think are usually the most basic of sandwiches. A spread of just-sweet, cinnamony apple butter and a thick piece of white cheddar elevate the turkey beyond the everyday. And The Garden is much more than an afterthought of a vegetarian selection. Hoffman roasts yellow and green squash, red onion and yellow pepper, douses them in Balsamic and tops it all with Fontina and a garlicky tomato confit. It left me delighted.

The medium rare roast beef on “The Beast,” which truly is a monster of a sandwich, is absolutely enough to serve two (or give one person lunch the next day.)

Punchy horseradish aioli livens things up; it’s on top of that pile of beef plus white cheddar, smoky tomato confit and arugula. The juices from the confit soak nicely into the greens, making it sort of like a tiny salad in the center of a sandwich.

I focused my visits on Phyl’s sandwiches, but there are also several Jewish specialities, which Hoffman makes using family recipes, including a noodle kugel, which is a baked casserole made with noodles and potatoes; and knish, a savory pastry snack; and matzo ball soup (the only one I got to try, it’s fabulous, warm and comforting.)

He’s also serving bagels with lox and bagel sandwiches, an area of the menu he’s slowly growing. He said he anticipates the Jewish specialties will rotate seasonally. He’s also house making briny, tangy pickle spears using his own secret recipe. You’ll get one with your sandwich; don’t skip it.

Phyl’s only has a few seats, and a lot of its business is takeout. Service is brisk and friendly, and don’t be surprised if a staff member or another customer strikes up a conversation. It’s that kind of place. In the warmer months, outdoor seating will most certainly welcome a patio lunch crowd.

Hoffman is right that Omaha has, for too long, had a severe lack of legit, Jewish New York-style delis.

I can confidently confirm one thing: Those days are over.

Phyl’s Deli
1008 Howard St., in the Old Market
(402) 407-3354

M-Th 11a to 3p
F & Sat 11a to 3p & 9p to 1a
Closed Sunday

Grow Omaha Eats with Sarah Baker Hansen is sponsored by Cheer Athletics, one of the largest and most respected All-Star cheerleading programs in the United States. The Omaha location is at 14620 Gold Coast Road, near Highway 370 and 144th Street. Learn more HERE!

The Big Story

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Photo Above: Rendering of the future Mutual of Omaha skyscraper viewed from Charles Schwab Field

Mutual Breaks Ground on Downtown Tower

Mutual of Omaha has officially started construction on a 44-story headquarters tower at 14th & Farnam Street that will support the insurance and financial services company’s future growth while contributing to the economic vitality of the city’s urban core.

Mutual Chairman and CEO James Blackledge was joined by Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert and other dignitaries for a ceremonial groundbreaking to kick off construction of the 677-foot tall office tower, which is slated to open in 2026.

“Back in 1909, Mutual of Omaha got its start in downtown Omaha. Today, we are inspired by the energy here, and we are excited to be part of it,” Blackledge said. “Our investment in a downtown headquarters tower provides a rare opportunity to create a dynamic workplace for our associates while contributing to the strength of our downtown.”

Mayor Stothert said the Mutual of Omaha headquarters helps realize the city’s vision for downtown Omaha.

“Mutual of Omaha is part of our promising vision for downtown Omaha as a center for business and commerce, urban living, entertainment and recreation,” Stothert said. “We applaud Mutual’s investment, which will create more development, grow our economy, and draw innovative employers and talent to the urban core.”

Blackledge said the state-of-the art headquarters tower is designed to support flexible work arrangements, including in-person, remote and hybrid work modes.

At 677 feet, the building will feature 44 floors and approximately 800,000 square feet of office, meeting, collaboration and amenity space. It will include parking for 2,200 vehicles in a garage used by Mutual associates during business hours and the community during evening and weekend hours.

Highlighting the structure will be an inviting street-level lobby featuring conference space as well as an “experience center” spotlighting Mutual’s history, brand and impact on customers and the community.

The building will also feature a “sky lobby” that will welcome associates from the parking facility. A multi-level concept on the 16-20th floors, it will feature food services with diverse culinary offerings, a fitness center, employee wellness services, concierge technical support services as well as flexible conference and meeting spaces. Highlighting the sky lobby floors are landscaped outdoor terraces with sweeping views and outdoor dining, meeting and fitness spaces for Mutual associates.

The 44th floor will feature conference facilities highlighted by expansive views from a two-story atrium. Senior leaders will be positioned near their teams, eliminating the need for an executive floor.

At 800,000 square feet, the building is sized for a hybrid work model. Mutual’s current headquarters has approximately 1.7 million square feet.

The redevelopment of Mutual’s current home office complex is a key component of the company’s downtown move. “Continued development in Midtown is part of our vision for this project, and the redevelopment of our current home office is an important aspect of our plan,” Blackledge said. “From the University of Nebraska Medical Center to the Riverfront, linked by the modern streetcar, the potential for development is virtually unlimited.”

The company’s headquarters project is being developed by Lanoha Real Estate Co. Mutual is also working with a design team that includes global architecture firm HOK for interiors; design architect Pickard Chilton of New Haven, CT; architect of record Kendall/Heaton Associates of Houston; and Omaha’s Alvine Engineering.

This section is sponsored by RENZE. For over 128 years, we have been providing our clients with innovative solutions for interior corporate and retail branding, as well as unique exhibits and graphics for tradeshows and events. With leading-edge equipment and quality craftspeople working out of our 90,000 sq. ft. facility, we partner with you to help create your vision. See a wide variety of our work HERE!

Grow Omaha Snippets

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Sen. Deb Fischer announced this week that Eppley Airport will receive a $20.9 million grant to help pay for a canopy to be constructed above the terminal’s drop-off and pick-up lanes. Eppley is also planning a $600 million terminal expansion, which is expected to be completed in 2027.

Cattlemen’s Heritage Beef Company plans to build a processing plant near Interstate 29 & Bunge Road, that could bring $8 billion in revenue to the state of Iowa, according to KETV. The developer originally planned to break ground in 2022 but the pandemic made finding and engineering more difficult than predicted. The company now plans to start construction in the spring with the backing of a new investor. The plant is expected to employ 800 workers.

The Omaha Streetcar Authority plans to partner with Portland, Ore. to acquire streetcars for both cities. Omaha needs to purchase six vehicles; Portland needs 11. By bundling the two purchases into one, both cities expect to save considerable money.

Omaha Public Power District plans to build a utility-scale solar farm on a former landfill at 126th & State Street, according to the Omaha World-Herald. Douglas County owns the 160-acre landfill; the solar farm would be a joint project of the county and OPPD. The utility will begin a feasibility study this summer to determine how much power it could generate and when it might come online.

Regal Cinemas is closing its theater at 7440 Crown Point Avenue in Sorensen Park Plaza. It is one of 39 U.S. locations the troubled company is closing. Regal Cinemas is the nation’s second-largest movie-theater chain behind AMC Theaters.

Grow Omaha Snippets are brought to you by Omaha Car Care with four metro area locations – 131st & Dodge, 58th & Center, 85th & L and 144th & Harrison.

Omaha Car Care “We’ll be along for the ride.”

Business News

Local Business News Sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland:

Despite favorable legislation passed in 2020 by the Nebraska Unicameral, Omaha saw almost no new condominium construction last year, according to attorney Bob Dailey, a condo expert at McGrath North. A grand total of six residential condo units were developed last year, all of them in the Boxcar 10 project near 10th & Pacific Street.

“I believe knowledge of the new condominium law simply hasn’t gotten out to developers,” Dailey said. “They don’t realize the advantages of the law.”

Amazon has opened its delayed center in Council Bluffs. The 270,000 sq. ft. “sorting center” at South 24th & Veterans Memorial Highway was completed at least a half year ago and opened just prior to this past holiday season as a “supplemental fulfillment center,” according to Nebraska Examiner. Amazon has a regional distribution center at Highway 50 & 370 as well as last-mile warehouse near 132nd & Cornhusker Road. Another 140,000 sq. ft. warehouse at 72nd & State Street is completed but not yet open.

Union Pacific Corporation this week reported 2022 fourth quarter net income of $1.6 billion, or $2.67 per diluted share. This compares to 2021 fourth quarter net income of $1.7 billion, or $2.66 per diluted share. Reported net income for full year 2022 was $7.0 billion, or $11.21 per diluted share. These full year results compare to full year 2021 net income of $6.5 billion, or $9.95 per diluted share.

Green Plains Inc. and Green Plains Partners LP will release fourth quarter and full year 2022 financial results prior to the market opening on February 8, 2023, and then host a joint conference call beginning at 8 a.m. Central time to discuss fourth quarter and full year 2022 performance and outlook.

HDR has developed an industry-first Airport Landside Multimodal Demand Analysis Tool to help airports identify and explore mobility improvements and management strategies. As airports plan their growth, a better traffic demand analysis enhances project planning, improves the experience for travelers and ultimately saves airports time and money.

This section is sponsored by FranNet of The Heartland, the local, trusted franchise experts. They are “in the business of helping you get into business!”

Grow Omaha Residential

Preparing for Spring Real Estate Market

By Joe Finlay

With the exception of Spring 2020, the number of houses for sale in Omaha increases every March and usually starts to decrease every September or October. Sale prices typically fluctuate with the seasons too. While the trend line continues to increase, sale prices are typically higher in the spring and summer than they are in the winter months. The median sale price in the summer can be as much as $10,000-$20,000 more than in the winter.

This doesn’t mean it’s harder to buy or sell in the winter, and it doesn’t mean it’s easier to sell in the spring. Since there’s more inventory of homes for buyers to choose from in the spring, competition can be stronger. In the winter, there may be fewer homes on the market, but the buyers who are looking are typically pretty serious about making a purchase.


We’ve noticed the houses that are selling right now are the ones that don’t need any work and are priced correctly. These are the homes that are well maintained and are move-in ready. Sellers should use this time to prepare their home to sell by making sure all their appliances work, clean carpets, refinish floors, paint their walls and consider any exterior spring landscaping needs that may come up. I like to recommend speaking to a home inspector to find out which items need more attention than others – buyers don’t want to worry about leaky faucets, electrical or HVAC issues.

When sellers in Omaha price their homes more than 5 percent over fair market value, that reduces buyer activity, attracts the wrong prospects, helps sell the competition, causes appraisal problems and extends the time on the market.


If history repeats itself, we should have more homes on the market starting in March. Now is the time for buyers to get their finances in order, speak to a Realtor and understand the steps of the home-buying process. Buyers who are more prepared are more likely to win when the market gets competitive. This could also be the time to explore new construction to see if that might be a good fit.

Bottom Line

Being an educated seller or educated buyer is more important than ever. Knowing when to sell or make a purchase can be difficult given the current market conditions. For a more detailed analysis of the spring housing market in Omaha, let’s connect.

Grow Omaha Residential is developed and sponsored by Joe Finlay, REALTOR with NP Dodge Real Estate.

Grow Omaha University

Leadership & Sales Insights for Ambitious People

Compiled by Grow Omaha co-founJeff Bealsder and sales trainer 

Sponsored by MyStaff, Inc.

Leadership & Management

Employees who come into your company open and eager to grow will become the backbone of your employee base, according to Bellevue-based MindSet, a Bellevue-based leadership consultancy. “When you give an employee the opportunity to work for a supervisor who invests in that employee’s professional and personal success, you will find that employee to be incredibly loyal to your company.”

Attention sales and marketing leaders – During a period of economic uncertainty, leading growth is difficult, says sales expert Anthony Iannarino. Here are some external challenges your team might be facing at this time:

1. Buyers prefer to start their journey without the help of a salesperson.

2. Buyers are plagued with uncertainty, making it difficult to create and win deals.

3. Your prospective clients seek consensus, not only from their team but from their entire organization. Most sales organizations don’t yet enable this critical outcome.

4. With the time-based nature of sales results and the increasing length of B2B sales cycles, a salesforce that lacks accountability for prospecting will never make up the prospecting work, causing missed goals. While you’re working towards your goals, you must protect your own clients while winning clients from your competitors.


Sales Statistic – B2B sellers should call prospective buyers directly, according to Rain Group. More than 50 percent of decision-makers prefer to be contacted over the phone.

Sales author Mark Hunter shares a few questions to ask yourself in order to be more successful:

1. Realize sales is a mind game and it starts with your mind. Who is the voice you need to get out of your life and who do you need to let in?

2. Who is the customer you need to drop that is taking too much of your time for little profit or no potential for profit?

3. Narrow your focus. Don’t try to prospect everyone, but rather be selective.

4. Set your prospecting time and stick to it! Prospecting will never become a priority until you make it priority in your calendar.


“You can’t teach leadership, but it can be learned.” – Lloyd J. Edwards Jr.

Grow Omaha University is sponsored by MyStaff Inc, a locally owned staffing firm whose purpose is helping Nebraska companies recruit for corporate office positions.

My Staff Inc – Our team helps you find yours!

Upcoming Events in the Metro

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Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea January 20 – May 12, 2023: This is more than a set of eye-catching sculptures, these thought-provoking pieces are designed to inspire conversations about conservation and generate positive changes and behaviors towards the environment. The epic exhibit includes a titanic triggerfish, a pair of grand penguins, and an 11-foot-long shark named Chompers! Enjoy this display from January 20 through May 14, 2023!

Singles Paw-ty on January 26, 2023: Join Smitten Singles and Omaha Dog bar for a Paw-ty like no other! This singles event is perfect for meeting other pet lovers. Make sure to check out how to register for this singles paw-ty and save your spot.

Ladies Night on January 27, 2023: Bushwackers has been around for 35+ years, and in its current iteration, is a country music venue and bar. Every Friday night is ladies’ night in 2023! Enjoy free bull rides, shot specials and no cover charge. Grab your girlfriends and come on down for a good time!

Paint Workshop: Winter Scene on Birch Tree Wood on January 28, 2023: During this workshop, you will be given all the materials, instruction, and time to paint a calm winter scene using acrylic paint on sliced birch wood. This workshop takes place in a fun, relaxed and creative atmosphere at Hot Shops Art Center! Join instructor Jennifer Young of J.Diane Creations, who will guide you in creating and customizing this original piece in studio 219.

Above & Beyond Exhibit Opening on January 28, 2023: Design and test-fly a supersonic jet. Pilot a drone to deliver medical supplies to a remote village. Experience flight as a bird or futuristic wing-flapping aircraft. Take an elevator ride to the edge of space. Listen to stories about people behind the advances in flight and professionals who share their excitement for their jobs and the next century of advancements and discovery. Enjoy it all at the Above & Beyond Exhibit at the Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum!

This Upcoming Events section is sponsored by Eagle Mortgage Company, is a locally owned and full-service mortgage company in Omaha.

Eagle Mortgage can help you realize your dream of owning a home.

People in the News

Sponsored by Baird Holm Attorneys at Law

a beautiful blue and white house with a green lawn
digital rendering of Flatiron District project buildings

Jim Monahan has been promoted to vice president of group underwriting for workplace solutions at Mutual of Omaha. He joined Mutual in 2005 as a chief underwriter. He has held various roles in group underwriting, most recently director of workplace solutions group underwriting. Before Mutual, Monahan was an underwriting consultant at Lincoln Financial. He received a bachelor’s degree from the County College of Morris.

HDR has named Darryl Shoemaker, Ph.D., as the company’s chief talent development officer. Shoemaker will work closely with all of the firm’s corporate groups and the over 50 ways they invest back into the employee-owners of HDR to help them map a rewarding and fulfilling career journey.

Drew Petersen was recently promoted to Omaha District Director at FBG Service Corporation. He had been a key account manager since joining the Omaha company in 2018.

The “People in the News” section is sponsored by Baird Holm LLP. Baird Holm’s dedicated team of real estate lawyers has extensive experience in all aspects of real estate law, including purchases, sales, zoning and land use, leasing, and dispute resolution. Click HERE for more information.

Wall Street: The Week in Review

with George Morgan

The author is founder of Morgan Investor Education of Omaha.

Sponsored by Baird Holm Attorneys at Law

Views and opinions expressed herein are solely those of the author.

Last year was a disaster for bond investors. Interest rates peaked in 1984, then headed south for the next three and a half decades. Anybody under the age of 50 has never had the pleasure of living in a rising-interest-rate environment.

Mom and pop believed, and brokers preached, that bonds were safe. Then, along came the Feds and their whoops moment that inflation was transitory. Bond prices fell faster than the temperature in a Minnesota blizzard.

Fast forward to the first couple of weeks of 2023, and we find a few green shoots on the bond horizon. The yield on the 10-year treasury – which is kind of the bond benchmark – has come down almost 85 basis points from a high of around 4.50%. This has provided a little bit of relief for mom and pop, without any help from their brain-dead robo accounts. More help my be on the way because the Wall Street media talking heads are saying that the Fed may be looking at only a 50 BP pop at their February meeting. Can I have an AMEN!!

As we enter earnings season, the big takeaway is that bad markets mean bad earnings for the big banks. As the talking heads on CNBC so aptly pointed out, the CEOs of the big banks can only control the expense side of the P/L statement. So, when the peanut butter hits the fan, the muckety-mucks on Wall Street slashed staff and bonuses.

This week’s earnings announcements from the big banks were a mixed bag. Goldman Sachs got hit the hardest, and their CEO seems to have his thing in the ringer. Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan faired a little bit better. Their dealmaking and trading business turned to poo poo, but their wealth management division saved the day. Translation: The clients can lose money, but we still get ours.

Flipping over to the Wall Street-West firms, – Schwab, Fidelity and Vanguard – they managed to do reasonably well through this schlimazel because their business model is based on their customers’ cash balance, not the transaction-based business model of the Wall Street banks. The fact that mom and pop swam upstream in 2022 and did not liquidate – like the mental giants on Wall Street did – provided the Wall Street-West firms with some tail wind.

Moral of the story is that Wall Street prospers during boom times when even blind squirrels find acorns. But, in the immortal words of the Oracle of Omaha: “When the tides goes out, you find out who is swimming naked.”

Have You Watched Grow O on Video Yet?

Jeff Beals, Trenton Magid and a guest in the KFAB 1110 Radio Booth

The Grow Omaha radio show broadcasts live every Saturday morning at 9:00, but now you can watch videos of each episode instead of just listening.

Grow Omaha’s brand-new website features video footage shot inside the radio studio during each week’s show!

Videos include News of the Week, Lightning Round, guest interviews, and “Grow Omaha Uncut,” a behind-the-scenes look at what happens during commercial breaks.

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