Monday, September 18, 2017

14 downtown Charleston restaurant projects we're watching and waiting for

Breakfast, bars, and pizza

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 at 3:09 PM

Starting to pop #sooncome

A post shared by Normandy Farm Artisan Bakery (@normandyfarm) on

The former Andolini's on Wentworth is getting a spit shine thanks to Chef Benjamin Towill - BASIC PROJECTS/ INSTAGRAM
  • basic projects/ instagram
  • The former Andolini's on Wentworth is getting a spit shine thanks to Chef Benjamin Towill
It's that time again. The point in the year where we begin to forget how many restaurant projects are in the works on this tiny peninsula. We sit scratching our heads, asking our coworkers, "Was there something opening on Coming Street that had the word Chubby in it? What was that place that said it was opening in the old Bull Street Gourmet?"

We've answered those questions here and compiled a list below of all restaurants, eateries, brewpubs, and imbiberies (is that I thing? Let's make it a thing.) we expect to open before the year is out. Here's what we've got:

Chubby Fish
252 Coming St.
Partners Geoff Shyatt and James London are opening Chubby Fish sometime soon. Early reports said the project would open this spring so it's anyone's guess. What we do know is that the restaurant will operate in the 1,300-square-foot space and have a raw bar along with a menu of small plates, entrees, and whole fish, for example: a hacked softshell crab rice bowl with Benton’s Bacon, XO Sauce

280 Ashley Ave.
Daps is the breakfast brainchild of beverage king Jeremiah Schenzel and his business partner, Nicholas Dowling. The two plan to serve cocktails and brunch eats daily. If they can keep the floodwaters at bay, the cozy breakfast spot should be a great Westside addition.

Miller's All Day
120 King St.
When Bull Street Gourmet announced its King Street closure, we worried a Cheesecake Factory was on its way. Instead, a partnership between miller Greg Johnsman of Geechie Boy Grits and restaurant consultant Nathan Thurston is planned. The two will open Miller's All Day, the second new breakfast concept expected in Charleston this year. The concept will be "brunch-centric," honoring Thurston and Johnsman's southern roots, we're told. Naturally, expect grits.

The Getaway
541 King St.
Longtime F&Ber Genevieve Mashburn is opening her own cabana bar and she's bringing in Top Chef alum Emily Hahn to run the kitchen. The two will shape the place around their South American travels so expect Pisco Sours and maybe an empanada or two.

Mex 1
810 Meeting St.
Mex 1 Coastal Cantina may soon be three outposts strong. The Board of Architectural Review gave its initial plans the greenlight last week for a two story, two patio building at the corner of Morrison Drive and Meeting Street.

Parcel 32
442 King St.
After 17 years as Fish, Patrick Properties is changing the King Street spot to Parcel 32. The new project will be helmed by St. Croix native Chef Digby Stridiron who plans to bring the flavors of his native island to Charleston this fall.

550 King St. Suite 100
Michigander Felix Landrum is opening a Parisian cocktail bar on King. According to our initial report, consultant Nathan Thurston is helping Landrum get the project underway. The spot will serve small, lighter plates and Parisian-influenced cocktails.

Vintage Lounge
545 King St.
Gone are the naked panted ladies and the two way TVs in the back room, the former Torch space is slated to become a proper cocktail bar. That's the plan of Midtown owner Mike Shuler. According to Eater, Bin 152's former sommelier Nathan Wheeler will serve the good stuff and King Street Hospitality Derek Falta and pastry chef Travis Biernack will handle the menu.

430 Meeting St.
Arguably the most anticipated new restaurant project by the hardcore eater set, Tu is the work of XBB owners co-owners Duolan Walker-Li, Josh Walker and Joey Ryan. But don't expect the same Asian menu as Xiao Bao. Tu will be wildly different from the menu to the decor. As Walker describes it, "It'll be a little more fancy-boy inside."

Basic Kitchen
82 Wentworth St.
Outside of Charleston, British Chef Ben Towill is known for his New York City restaurants Fat Radish, The Leadbelly, and The East Pole. Here he's played it much quieter. Since moving to the city, he's worked on Basic Projects, a design firm with his wife Kate Dougherty while they quietly craft a new restaurant on Wentworth Street — Basic Kitchen. The restaurant will replace what was last Andolini's. No time stamp on when to expect Towill to unlock its doors, but follow Instagram for sneak peeks.

384 Huger St.
Will Huge Street ever have its own wood-fired pizza place? We wait and wonder. Renzo, a restaurant from Erik Hutson and Nayda Freire, was first announced in January and since the team has done lots of pop ups and teasers, but butcher paper still lines the windows on the spot.

721 King St.
Speaking of pizza. Brooks Reitz's take on 'za is expected to open later this year. Together with Little Jack's Chef Jon Amato, the two have promised thin crust pizza “inspired by both Roman style pizza but also the bar pizza of classic Midwestern joints.”

Normandy Project
1 Broad St.
Mike Ray of Normandy Farm and partner Mark Beck are banking on a former bank becoming Charlestonian's ideal diner. The as yet unnamed restaurant, which was originally projected to open in June, will casual spot for breakfast, lunch, and dinner that Ray described as "Frenchy, brasserie-type cuisine."

237 Fishburne St.
Chef John Zucker's second project, Purlieu, looks like its inching toward opening. The owner of Cru Cafe is taking his French technique uptown with his new restaurant. Look to Facebook for updates on the the Westside modern French brasserie's opening.

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Taco Tequila Kombat Semifinals kick off tonight at the Brick

Taco 'bout a good time

Posted by Connelly Hardaway on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 at 2:19 PM

Fill your mouth hole with tacos. - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Fill your mouth hole with tacos.

You know you wanna. Tonight Taco Kick's monthly Taco Tequila Kombat is back, pitting two local restaurants against one another in a battle of tequila and tacos.

At 9 p.m. head to The Brick where Amen Street and The Icehouse face off in the semifinal round. Your $20 ticket gets you a cocktail and taco from each restaurant — and the ability to help pick the fave pairing with your vote.

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Brews Next: Rescheduled Beer Week events, trivia, and puppies this week

Events for the week of Sept. 18-24

Posted by Mary Scott Hardaway on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 at 11:35 AM

  • Flickr user Maria Eklind


Detox at Frothy Beard with this Monday evening yoga class starting at 6 p.m., then retox with some pints post down dog.

Purchase any craft draft beer for $4 at Ms. Rose's during this South Park themed trivia night starting at 7 p.m.


Honor food and defend beer at this Charleston Beer Week Holy City Brewing event. From 4 to 8 p.m., sip five beers from Brooklyn Brewery and HCB paired with five dishes created by Brooklyn Brewery House Chef Andrew Gerson and HCB Chef Joel Norman. The event is pay as you go, so imbibe as much or as little as you'd like.

What's old is new again at the Edmund's Oast Exchange Old Time Tuesdays beer tastings. Starting at 5:30 p.m., enjoy special $5 beer tastings selected by advanced cicerone Brandon Plyler. All proceeds go to the Trident Literacy Association, a charity giving second chances to adults who didn't graduate high school.


It's football night at Running for Brews; wear your fave team colors, run a 5K, then end the evening with brews at Charleston Beer Works. Runners meet at Beer Works at 7 p.m.

This Charleston Beer Week event takes you off the bar stool and into the air. Starting at 5 p.m. at Higher Gravity, beer drinkers climb the Wild Blue Ropes course, then come down to enjoy a beer garden with local, high gravity beers. There will be food, and music from Tyler Boone and The Leftorium.

Support the Sea Island Habitat for Humanity from 5 to 9 p.m. at Frothy Beard. Proceeds from every pint purchased will support the local charity.

From 6 to 11 p.m. at Craftsmen Kitchen and Tap House, taste the beer that was made during BREWSTER brew days in August. $1 from every pint benefits the Center for Women.

Puppies and pints, need we say more? From 4 to 7 p.m. at Bay Street Biergarten, drink and eat on the cheap, pet pups, and go home happy knowing that 10 percent of Biergarten's food sales from the patio will be donated to Pet Helpers.

It's that time again: hump day trivia at Low Tide, where it's free to play and the prizes are better than your average "free drink" token. Brains and Brews begins at 7 p.m. on the dot.


Grab your smartest buds for team trivia at Frothy starting at 7:30 p.m.

Edmund's Oast Exchange holds its weekly Sarah's Selections wine tasting starting at 5:30 p.m. The tasting is $5 and proceeds benefit the Trident Literary Association.

Enjoy the original Tradesman Brewing space at one of their last events before officially moving to King St. extension. The Dough Boys pop up from 4 to 8 p.m.


We all know red wine and chocolate are the perfect, indulgent pair. But what about chocolate ... and hops? From 6 to 8 p.m. at Frothy test your taste buds with beer and chocolate truffle pairings: Capsized with a caramel sea salt truffle, Jetty with a lemon ginger truffle, Great White Whit with a blood orange truffle, and Summer Summer Summer Lime with a key lime truffle.

Still have a sweet tooth? Head to Tradesman to try beer and cookie pairings. It's the last cookie and beer flight at the flagship location, so be sure to arrive right at 4 p.m. to beat the cookie crowds.


Starting at noon, head to Charles Towne Fermentory for their rescheduled There Will be Hops Beer Week event. They will be pouring brews from up and down the East Coast until midnight, and The Castejones will provide delish Spanish fare.

Join John Lewis and the Lewis Barbecue crew as they explore different ways to cook and brew with the hatch green chile. Chefs from Juan Luis, Jack of Cups, Short Grain, and Bar Normandy cook up roasted green chile bites and Revelry Brewing pours their new collab beer "Made from Hatch." There will also be cocktails from Bar Mash and Cathead Vodka, and chiles roasted on site that you can take home with you. The Chile Roast starts at 5 p.m.

Red Cedar Review plays at Frothy from 7 to 10 p.m.


Sendoff the Tradesman James Island location with El Pincho tacos, pints galore, and maybe a few tears.

Puppies and pints and BRUNCH! Head to Biergarten from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for all three.

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Charleston Wine + Food to host Dia de los Muertos party on Nov. 1

I die

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Mon, Sep 18, 2017 at 10:07 AM

Tickets go on sale Wed. Sept. 20 - FILE
  • File
  • Tickets go on sale Wed. Sept. 20

Charleston Wine + Food festival may not have hosted its annual ticket launch party this year, but it's going in big on Day of the Dead fête sponsored by City Paper.

Calling it the event Souls + Saints: Dia de los Muertos, the Wed. Nov. 1 party will include tequila cocktails and chef stations from the likes of Pancito & Lefty's Robert Berry, FIG's Jason Stanhope, Juan Luis' John Lewis and Ray England, and more. Garage Cuban Band and DJ Rehab will provide the music as guests enjoy Day of the Dead performances, flower crowns, sugar skull face painting, and a photobooth.

Souls + Saints will also be the finals of the festival's 2018 Official Cocktail Competition. An hour before the party gates open, the final round will take place. There the top four finalists will compete for the title, then guests will get to taste each cocktail and choose a fan favorite winner at the party.

Souls + Saints Dia de los Muertos will take place in Charleston Wine + Food's parking lot at (635 Rutledge Ave.) from 7:30 - 10 p.m. Tickets are all inclusive $75 and can be purchased at

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Friday, September 15, 2017

Designs for new Mex 1 location earn initial OK from BAR

Taco, queso, NoMo

Posted by Dustin Waters on Fri, Sep 15, 2017 at 10:40 AM

An overhead view of the proposed plans for Mex 1's future location on upper Meeting Street - BAR/MIDDLETON GROUP
  • BAR/Middleton Group
  • An overhead view of the proposed plans for Mex 1's future location on upper Meeting Street
Plans for Mex 1 Coastal Cantina’s future downtown location gained conceptual approval from Charleston’s Board of Architectural Review Thursday evening.

Designs for the proposed two-story eatery set for upper Meeting Street earned unanimous support from the board. Joining the restaurant’s two locations in West Ashley and Sullivan’s Island, the proposed new location would sit on a pointed strip of property where Meeting Street and Morrison Drive converge.

Blake Middleton of architecture and design firm the Middleton Group told the board that the awkward shape of the property posed an interesting challenge in designing the new project. Members of the Board of Architectural Review and the Historic Charleston Foundation agreed with Middleton on the importance of bringing an iconic structure to what they all described as a gateway to the city from North Charleston.  “Generally, we like the design. We think it’s nice and inviting. The site plan is good,” said April Wood of the Historic Charleston Foundation. “We would suggest that the corner element be a little bit more iconic. We feel like this is a cube and maybe something a little more bold could be used. This is a gateway intersection, and something a little bit more artistic or something more than a cube would be better.”

Although city staff initially recommended deferring approval for the restaurant’s conceptual designs, BAR members decided to move forward with plans for the building that would include two outside patios on the second-floor and ground level.

“There are some things that need refined and dealt with, but generally I think it’s kind of in keeping with the kind of stuff that’s been happening up there,” board member Julia Martin said of the plans for the new Mex 1 site in Charleston’s East Central area.

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