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“The last year has been pretty challenging industry-wide for full-service dining,” Lennox says. “Muchacho has been showing consistent growth for the last couple years. It was bursting at the seams. Golden Eagle was moving in the other direction.”
If you were to cram the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s into a blender, you’d end up with something close to this self-styled “diners club.” Golden Eagle shouldn’t be taken too seriously as a restaurant, but it’s also more than a nostalgia-themed hot spot appealing to millennials’ love of vintage.
Michael Lennox, founder of the popular BeltLine hangout Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall, will revive the 904 Memorial Drive space as not one, but two restaurants.
In our car-centric city, the Atlanta BeltLine has been a game changer, and restaurant owners know that more than anyone. On Thursday, chef Kevin Rathbun (Kevin Rathbun Steak, Rathbun’s, Krog Bar, and KR Steakbar), Michael Lennox (Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall), and BeltLine designer Ryan Gravel of Perkins Will will lead a discussion about the impact of urban development on restaurant design at a sold-out event called Dining + Design.
Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall, the patio-centric restaurant and bar just off the Beltline, is scheduled to open in the next two weeks across from Rathbun Steak at mile marker 9.25. Led by restaurateur Michael Lennox and executive chef Robert Lupo—formerly of Leon’s Full Service—, Ladybird will focus on sharable dishes previously described as “campfire cuisine.” Kyle Schmidt of King + Duke will serve as sous chef. The initial menu will offer approximately twenty items that will change based on local availability.