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story.lead_photo.caption A crew of window installers removes the murals that have covered the front of The Oyster Bar since 2004. The owners say they plan to preserve the murals on the inside of the restaurant. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/​​Jerry McLeod)

Even when you don’t think you’ll be able to see the forest for the trees, the local restaurant industry continues to see new shoots sprouting:

• Rosie’s Pot & Kettle Cafe, 423 Bond St., Little Rock, formerly Calvin’s Soul Food & Lounge, is now open for takeout, including curbside pickup, 6 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday. Co-owner Katie McDaniel says she’ll be serving weekday breakfast and home-cooking lunch; check out the menu, etc., on Facebook ( and Instagram. The phone number is (501) 747-1456.

• And Taqueria Los Agaveros has opened in the drive-thru-only space at 3600 S. University Ave., Little Rock, which once housed a Dunkin’ Donuts and most recently Chicago’s Phillys and Gyros. The comparatively broad menu, which you can see on the Facebook page (, features tacos, burritos, quesadillas, tortas, sopes, burritos, ceviche and melitas and chicken, steak and shrimp entrees. Hours are 10 a.m.-9 p.m. daily. The phone number is (501) 539-9663.

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• The Whole Hog Cafe at 5107 Warden Road, North Little Rock, has closed for the duration, says co-owner-operator Rich Cosgrove, who posted last week on Facebook ( that “We’re going to be taking what we hope will be a short break” and suggests you watch their page for “our re-opening date.” There’s a similar voicemail message at the phone number, (501) 753-9227.


Some have wondered from the outset what last year’s change in ownership of The Oyster Bar, 3003 W. Markham St., Little Rock, would mean for the wood-panel murals painted by Little Rock artists, including one of Johnny Cash in the clouds by Stephano, that have decorated the exterior (and covered old window frames) since 2004. Well, colleague Jerry McLeod on Tuesday morning spotted crews from a window installer with Chris Carpenter, son of David Carpenter, co-owner with Chris Tanner, taking them down. Carpenter says he’s trying to preserve as much of the original look of the 1925 building as possible. He says they’re planning to preserve the murals inside the bar and that the new windows will shed light on the restaurant’s party room, where Tanner had been planning to install a bar, but which Carpenter explains is too small. The murals also include a Tabasco bottle painted by Kevin Kerby and Kevin Kresse’s portrait of Mac, a neighborhood business owner, puffing on a cigar while holding his bulldog on a leash.

Murals, including a portrait of Johnny Cash by Stephano, a nearby business owner with cigar and bulldog by Kevin Kresse and a Tabasco bottle by Kevin Kerby, have come down off the front of The Oyster Bar on West Markham Street after more than 15 years. The windows they covered are being replaced.

(Democrat-Gazette file photos)
Murals, including a portrait of Johnny Cash by Stephano, a nearby business owner with cigar and bulldog by Kevin Kresse and a Tabasco bottle by Kevin Kerby, have come down off the front of The Oyster Bar on West Markham Street after more than 15 years. The windows they covered are being replaced. (Democrat-Gazette file photos)

The Morris Nelson Harper Trust has filed a building permit application for $80,000 for 5110 W. Markham St., Little Rock, for “minor interior remodel including framing,” plumbing, mechanical and electrical modifications, modifications under the Americans With Disabilities Act and interior finishes. Yes, that’s the address of Chi’s Too, which we have reported is to be the new-old home of Black Angus Restaurant, which vacated its building on North Rodney Parham Road on March 24. Owner Karla Creasey has told us plans are to demolish the next-door Subway to make possible a drive-thru window, accessible from A Street. The building permit application notes that there’s a request on the table to change the street address to 5100 W. Markham St., which apparently is the province of the city of Little Rock’s Public Works department.

The Root Cafe, 1500 Main St., Little Rock, has added the Root Cafe Market to its spectrum, offering fresh locally sourced meats, cheeses, produce, bulk deli items and even toilet paper for curbside pickup or delivery, Tuesday-Sunday. Restaurant hours are 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. The phone number is (501) 414-0423, the website, the Facebook page,

Little Rock real estate brokers Flake & Kelley Commercial are touting a “Rare Restaurant Opportunity in Little Rock,” a vacant 6,500-square-foot property on approximately 0.68 acres at 8409 Interstate 30 that, yes, used to be El Chico’s Mexican Grill. The asking price is $795,000. Among its other selling points: “all furniture, fixtures, and equipment in place; incredible visibility from Interstate 30; [and] convenient access to I-30 & Geyer Springs Road exit.”

Another virtual tip jar has surfaced. Log into and send a tip, via Venmo or Cash App, to a restaurant employee that the site chooses for you at random.

And Bentonville’s Ropeswing Hospitality Group, which operates The Pressroom, Louise and The Preacher’s Son, has started a meal subscription service to donate food “to those working to stem the current health crisis.” Place an order for home-delivered prepared meals and have them delivered Monday-Friday; packages options, which you can see at, include service for two or four, three or five days per week. Ropeswing staff will maintain proper social distancing and wear face masks and gloves for no-contact delivery. In most cases, meals will arrive in ready to heat packaging along with specific instructions; they can also be refrigerated or frozen for later use. Email or call (479) 268-4157, Extension 1107. And yes, you can order any of those packages for yourself.

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 send a note to Restaurants, Weekend Section, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, P.O. Box 2221, Little Rock, Ark. 72203. Send email to:


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