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TRANSITIONS

By Eric E. Harrison

This article was published November 15, 2012 at 3:50 a.m.

Correction: La Salsa Mexican & Peruvian Cuisine's phone number is (501) 753-1101. It was reported incorrectly in the original story.

OK, here’s what we do know: The Capital Hotel in Little Rock has hired, or is in the process of signing a contract with, a new executive chef, a replacement for Lee Richardson, who left the hotel in June. We know that the new chef comes from outside the hotel, and from outside Little Rock, and that the person has a pretty impressive resume, an “entrepreneurial background” and a fairly high culinary profile. And we know that the identity of this person, which is one of the things we don’t know yet (along with when this person will actually start work), will be made public sometime in the next week to 10 days. We will keep you posted.

Local Lime, the latest project from Scott McGehee, John Beachboard and Herren Hickingbotham, is scheduled to open today at the Promenade at Chenal, in the 17000 block of Chenal Parkway, just a few doors down from the same owners’ Big Orange. McGehee has described the 3,200-square-foot restaurant as an uber-upscale taco bar with not-to-be-believed margaritas. The restaurant will initially be open at 5 p.m. for dinner only through Sunday, temporarily close on Monday and pick up lunch hours starting Tuesday. Regular hours: 11 a.m.-11 p.m. daily. (They will, of course, be closed Thanksgiving Day.) The telephone number: (501) 448-2226.

The Tropical Smoothie outlet that had been in the southwest portion of the River Market’s Ottenheimer Market Hall, 400 President Clinton Ave., Little Rock, is gone. No word on what will replace it.

La Salsa Mexican & Peruvian Cuisine has replaced Las Palmas in the storefront in the Lakehill Shopping Center, 3824 John F. Kennedy Blvd., North Little Rock (where its neighbors include the 1/2 of 1/2 resale store, a Dollar General outlet and E’s Bistro). The menu is primarily Mexican but there’s a pull-out page with 11 Peruvian entrees, and the restaurant offers a $6.50 weekday lunch buffet. And apparently it has a private club license so it can sell beer and margaritas on local-option-dry Park Hill. Hours are 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Saturday and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday. The phone number is (501) 773-1101.

And speaking of North Little Rock, Maison Terre Tea Room & Herb Shop has opened inside Galaxy Furniture, 304 Main St., in the Argenta district (formerly a home of Hunka Pie). “We strive to create products using all-natural and organic ingredients,” according to the website (maisonterre. net/tearoom); the menu offers a “variety of organic teas as well as contemporary and traditional European fare, including daily specials, sandwiches (egg salad, pimento cheese, roasted vegetable mousse, curry chicken, chicken pecan, Mediterranean tuna, salmon mousse), soups (creamy tomato, cauliflower cheddar, butternut squash, French onion, cucumber avocado, mulligatawny, Brazilian seafood, chili) and salads. The herb shop offers more than 100 medicinal and culinary herbs and spices. Hours are 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. for lunch, 2-4 for afternoon tea Monday-Wednesday and Friday-Saturday, plus events by reservation. The phone number is (501) 516-1464 or e-mail eva@maisonterre.net.

Next Bistro & Bar is now open in what used to be Diversions at 2611 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock, serving, according to its Facebook page, “Mediterranean food and beverages in Arkansas,” 4 p.m.-2 a.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Saturday. And yes, although we did not get a return call on a voice mail by deadline, it appears from everything we’ve seen that they are not, in fact, open on Friday. The phone number is (501) 663-6398.

Brad McCray says his Jamaican-theme Montego Cafe, which is replacing Porter’s Jazz Cafe at 315 Main St., Little Rock, will open on Monday, serving Caribbean and Jamaican food — including jerk chicken, island curry shrimp and an assortment of salads, sandwiches and burgers. Opening time will be 11 a.m., closing time to be determined, Monday-Friday; Saturday hours will be 4 p.m.-1 a.m. The phone number is (501) 372-1555.

And Executive Chef Stephen Burrow at Forty Two, the restaurant in the Clinton Presidential Center, 1200 President Clinton Ave., Little Rock, is preparing a four-course menu that “celebrates Native American culture and cuisine with tastes of the American fall harvest” for the restaurant’s monthly “Around the World” get-together today. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., dinner is served at 7 p.m. Cost is $27.95 per person; reservations are required. Call (501) 537-0042.

Has a restaurant opened — or closed — near you in the last week or so? Does your favorite eatery have a new menu? Is there a new chef in charge? Drop us a line. Call (501) 399-3667 or (501) 378-3513, or send a note to Restaurants,Weekend Section, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 121 E. Capitol Ave., Little Rock, Ark. 72201. Send e-mail to:

eharrison@arkansasonline.com

Weekend, Pages 40 on 11/15/2012

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