Amick on the new Blais project

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ATL Food Chatter: June 28, 2011
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I reached a pleased Bob Amick on the horn shortly after John Kessler broke the news that Amick and his Concentrics Hospitality are partnering with Richard Blais on a restaurant scheduled to open this winter in the former Waterhaven/Globe space. Here are a few more details that Amick shared:

Q: How did you manage to keep the plans a secret?
BA: Only my partner Todd Rushing, Richard, the architect and I knew about the project.

Q: Speaking of architects, who is designing the project?
BA: The Johnson Studio. But only Bill [Johnson] was in on the initial planning, his staff was kept in the dark until last week.

Q: What are you planning in terms of the look?
BA: You will not recognize the place. We are going to shrink the interior—the kitchen will be in the center of the room so everyone can see Richard at work. We are re-orientating the patio as well.

Q: One question that seems to be a constant concerning this space is parking. How do you plan on addressing that issue?
BA: Another feature of the design will be how customers will be able to drive right up to the front of the restaurant where we will offer complimentary valet parking.

Before Amick rang off, he did share that that the as-yet-to-be-named project may not the last one that he and Concentrics do with the peripatetic Blais.

NEWS AND NOTES:

The second annual Southern Chefs Potluck will be held on Sunday, July 31 from 3–6 p.m. at the Inn at Serenbe, as a benefit to Wholesome Wave Georgia. Thirteen area chefs will contribute a Southern supper side dish, relish and dessert to accompany the main dish of White Oak Pasture beef prepared by Jim ‘n’ Nick’s BBQ.

Podponics, the Atlanta-based organic urban agriculture company, has moved its operations to the Southside Industrial Park. Podponics, which can grow an acre’s worth of food in one recycled shipping container, currently supplies lettuce to local restaurants such as 4th & Swift, Serpas True Food, Rathbun’s, Pura Vida, Farm Burger and Goin’ Coastal Seafood and retailers such as Savi Urban Market and Market Across the Street.

Buckhead. Texas-based fast-casual sandwich shop Which Wich will open its second Atlanta store in Lenox Square. What Now Atlanta reported that the local franchise operator says the store will open in the food court by mid August.

Decatur. The recently shuttered Johnny’s Pizza will reopen as casual sandwich spot Rocket 88 in the next couple of weeks, according to Tomorrow’s News Today.

Midtown. Besha Rodell broke the story that Gary Mennie has left Table 1280.

Poncey Highland. We hear that neighborhood opposition may delay plans for the roof top bar at Richard Blais’s haute dog restaurant, HD.

Westside. Foodie Buddha touts the coming of Muncheez, a food stand/ trailer featuring wings, burgers, hot dogs and pizza, slated to open July 10th at Northside Tavern ,1058 Howell Mill Road.

Question of the Week: Name the new once-a-month food truck event coming to Midtown.

PS. The answer to last week’s QOTW—What Atlanta chef was named 2010 Southeast Region Chef of the Year by the American Culinary Federation?—is Jonn Nishiyama, Cherokee Town and Country Club.

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