Three food and beverage industry veterans are teaming up to launch Bearcat, a private dinner experience that will operate out of a King Street apartment located above Goorin Bros. Hat Shop. Owners George Kovach, Ian Jones and Brian Sexton will host the inaugural Bearcat dinner on Oct. 29, serving a nine-course meal featuring dishes like short rib with chanterelles, coconut curry snapper and more.
All three bring impressive resumes to Bearcat. Kovach, a North Carolina native, worked in Chicago at two Michelin-starred Acadia and one Michelin-starred Band of Bohemia, where he earned praise for his pastry work, including an Eater Young Gun nomination in 2017 and a semi-finalist spot on Zagat’s national 30-under-30 list.
Jones worked under Kovach as sous chef at Band of Bohemia in 2016 before moving on to Kitsune, a Chicago-based Japanese eatery that earned a spot on Esquire’s Best New Restaurants list in 2017.
Sexton, Bearcat’s general manager, earned a restaurant management degree from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris after a serious injury cut his soccer career short. Sexton went on to work at restaurants in Chicago and Alaska before moving to Charleston.
According to Sexton, the Bearcat cuisine will be “bold and exciting with innovative flavors.”
“It’s a true vision of chef Kovach’s style — technique and flavors that he’s learned,” Sexton said. “It’s going to be a warm, inviting and not-pretentious atmosphere.”
On Thursday, Oct. 29, Bearcat will host two seatings — at 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. — with a maximum of 10 guests at each private meal. Sexton said the chefs plan to host another two seatings on Sunday, Nov. 1 and hope to eventually find a permanent location.
With a cocktail, nine courses, wine pairings and coffee included in the $175 price, Sexton said he thinks this structured dinner is more approachable than most.
“We’re going to keep it as affordable as possible but still provide a really cool experience that people don’t normally get to see,” he said. “We’re welcoming you into our home to eat the food we like to cook.”