Community Smith takes over the Briza space in January

Restaurant to be led by Micah Willix, previously of Latitude and Ecco
Community Smith rendering

By Creme Design

Community Smith logoServing breakfast, lunch and dinner, Community Smith will replace Briza adjacent to the Renaissance in Midtown in early January. Executive chef Micah Willix (previously of the short-lived Latitude at Phipps and Ecco) is billing the restaurant as a “modern meatery.”

“We’ll have chicken, fish, beef, pork, and lamb, prepared in different ways—not just big hunks of meat,” Willix says.

Despite growing up vegan, Willix wanted a restaurant that “would stand the tests of time,” he says. “It’s a concept that evolves—it’s not stuck in a box.”

Menu items may include crispy clams with potato, crème fraiche and caviar; pan-roasted mussels with Calabrian chilies and charred toast; porchetta with rosemary elote, sweet peppers, and aioli; and smoked beef cheeks with berbere, coconut, and hard squash. Vegetarian-friendly dishes include roasted cauliflower with pickled mustard and turmeric; and cheese and toast with fresh herbs.

The 137-seat restaurant will be divided into a dining room and tavern with a twelve-seat patio. The dining room will feature reclaimed oak, leather-upholstered banquettes, and green plants. The tavern will be more casual with wood beams and rustic high top tables, subdued lighting, and a transparent bar wall.

Willix has yet to hire a lead mixologist, but the bar will offer craft spirits, classic cocktails, and a small, approachable wine list. There won’t be any draft beer; instead, all brews will be bottled, local, and seasonal.

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