Vesuvio Bistro, inside the Best Western Premier Governors Suites, 1501 Merrill Drive, Little Rock, is moving to 1315 Breckenridge Drive, the former west Little Rock El Chico location. Co-owner Bill Criswell says the target for opening is early July and the new location will pretty much double the seating capacity, to about 160 - a big deal considering that the restaurant frequently has to turn people away on weekends. The larger kitchen may also result in an expansion of the menu, Criswell says, and not long after the place gets open for dinner, it’ll also start opening for lunch. Hours at the current location are 5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday, 5-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday. The phone number is (501) 225-0500.
Bart Barlogie Jr. reports he’s looking at a week-long soft opening, starting with Cinco de Mayo (May 5) for his The Fold, a new taqueria and bar in the old Alltel fleet service station at 3501 Old Cantrell Road, Little Rock. His menu will feature a selection of botanas (small plates); a variety of ceviche; seven varieties of Mexican-style, soft-tortilla tacos; and a small selection of desserts. He’ll be open for lunch and dinner, Tuesday-Sunday (hours to be announced) and he’ll have a full bar with a good selection of tequilas and mezcal. Parking will mostly be across the street in spots he’s leasing from an office building. The Facebook page provides this phone number: (501) 350-9799.
When Little Rock businessman Joe Gillespie took over Vieux Carre, 2721 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock, April 1 from the Bennett family, he said he’d be making substantial changes to the wine list and lunch and dinner menus, which executive chef Greg Wallis, formerly of YaYa’s Euro Bistro, has done. He is slightly enhancing the restaurant’s “New Orleans-inspired” theme with roasted red snapper, blackened crawfish pasta and pan-fried catfish among the entrees, plus a Canal Burger and French Quarter Dip among the sandwiches. There have also been minor changes to the brunch menu. And the restaurant this week has started an interior makeover, starting with a paint job in an eggplant (two tones of purple) color scheme. Oh, and Gillespie says he’s working on a name change - details to come.
For those who voiced concern over just what restaurant in the shopping center with Kmart, framed by North Rodney Parham and Shackleford roads, the “restaurant space for lease” signs pertain to can relax. It’s the former Lone Star Steakhouse that’s vacant, as we have previously reported; Black Angus, Chuck E. Cheese’s and the Olive Garden are all still up and running.
Food & Foam Fest will feature samples of 300-plus beers, wines and food from local restaurateurs, 6-9 p.m. Friday at Dickey-Stephens Park, 400W. Broadway, North Little Rock. Tickets are $40, $65 for a VIP pass in advance ($45 at the door, $20 for designated drivers); organizers are hoping to raise $65,000 for the Arthritis Foundation. Call (501) 664-4591 or visit foamfest.org.
One of our sharp-eyed correspondents reports the approach of a Which Wich? Superior Sandwiches outlet in the former Quiznos space, 2607 Mc-Cain Blvd., North Little Rock. A corporate spokesman at the chain/franchise operation’s Dallas headquarters confirms a target opening date of June 3. We’ll keep you posted.
And speaking of chains, Chuy’s Little Rock, opening May 7 at 16001 Chenal Parkway, has named Camp Aldersgate as its charity partner. (All of the restaurants in the Austin, Texas, chain have similar partnerships.) Even before it opened, the restaurant raised $500 for the camp at an April 9 event; an additional fundraiser is set for May 6. The camp, on 120 acres on Little Rock’s western edge, provides “life-changing experiences” for individuals with special needs.
And still speaking of chains, Atlanta-based Chick-fil-A is giving its entire line of entree salads a makeover, starting Monday. The list will include three premium salads: Chick-fil-A Cobb Salad, Chick-fil-A Asian Salad and Chick-fil-A Grilled Market Salad (each “contain[ing] two full servings of vegetables and are each less than 430 calories,” according to a news release), plus an improved Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap “for the more health-conscious customer.” The chain is also adding calorie counts to its menu boards. Visit chick-fil-a.com/new-salads.
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: email@example.com
Weekend, Pages 38 on 04/25/2013
Print Headline: TRANSITIONS