GREEN BUSINESS: Tim Kilcoyne’s Sidecar Restaurant in Ventura

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“Simple, Seasonal and Fresh” is Chef Tim Kilcoyne’s philosophy when it comes the cuisine at his popular Ventura-based restaurant Sidecar, now entering its tenth year.

Chef Tim Kilcoyne

“Simplicity is what drives my cuisine,” said Chef Tim.  “My ingredients are the stars that I want to shine. I’m also a big advocate of keeping sustainable by shopping local.”

Chef Tim Kilcoyne

Chef Tim also believes in getting his produce right here in Ventura — at the local farmer’s markets. “It helps the local economy,” said Chef Tim.  “Buying what’s in season, whether it be blood oranges in the winter or heirloom tomatoes in the summer, also gives my customers the freshest product, literally from the farm to their table.

While it’s no secret that while shopping local cuts down on transportation costs and green house gas emissions when food is purchased locally vs. transported across county and state lines, in Chef Tim’s case, growing up on his family’s ranch in an agricultural community in the Antelope Valley gave him his sustainable start. On the ranch, Tim developed a deep love and respect for farming, and the result that dedicated farming produced.  Protecting the environment that nurtures us also instilled him with a sense of pride.  Chef Tim takes what he’s learned incorporating eco-friendly practices at Sidecar.

“We incorporate all types of recycling practices,” said Chef Tim.  “From the recycling of paper and cardboard products, to separating out food waste for trash and for our compost bin and garden.  We give our customers biodegradable recyclable containers for their leftovers and for their take-out.  We also encourage our clientele to bring their own reusable containers from home whenever possible.”


Chef Tim also beams when he talks about his vegetable and herb garden at the restaurant. “I’m happy to say the garden operates completely on the natural habitat.  We don’t have irrigation and we’ve never watered it.  We just let nature do its thing.”


Other environmentally friendly practices incorporated by Sidecar include, the retrofitting of LED lighting throughout their restaurant and a HVAC system that is regulated by Southern California Edison.

Recently the restaurant also signed up with Morgan’s Linen Company, the #1 rated green linen company in Los Angeles, to deliver and launder their restaurant linens and napkins.

“Most restaurants have plastic floor mats in the kitchen that collect grease and other debris. They then wash these mats outside allowing grease to run off into the stormdrains, which is a huge contributor to water pollution.  At Sidecar, we use carpet runners provided by Morgan’s.  They pick up for laundering every week, delivering fresh mats in return,” continued Chef Tim.

The glassware and utensils at the restaurant are reusable and even the Sidecar venue itself, a perfect ambiance for casual dining, is situated in a refurbished 1910 Pullman dining car!

When it comes to keeping ‘green,’ Chef Tim is a firm believer in staff education.  “I’m lucky that most of my staff are like-minded and continue with the sustainable habits they’ve already incorporated into their own value system.”

-By Maryann Ridini Spencer


Sidecar Restaurant, 3029 Main Street, Ventura, CA 93003, 805.653.7433

  • Hours:  Tuesday – Sunday, Lunch (11:30am-2:00pm), Dinner (5:00-Close)
  • Tuesdays:  Dinner menu and grilled cheese and Jazz night

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