We bid farewell to what seemed would be a forever favorite (R.I.P., Masa, sniff, sniff) and shrugged when Taps and the Rusty Bucket threw in the towel. But they say when one door closes, another opens—and Mercato isn’t disappointing in that department.
A big reveal earlier this month was that Zoës Kitchen, a fast-casual Mediterranean eatery, would be taking over the expansive Taps space near Second Cup by November. It’s not your ordinary quick-serve: There’s a full wine list, and a menu divided into starters, salads, sandwiches, entrées and kabobs (think: grilled chicken, orzo, hummus, pitas and more).
Meanwhile, Burntwood Tavern opened on schedule (it’s sandwiched between The Counter and Bravo), despite some lingering construction work on the façade. An extension of an Ohio-based chain, Chef Art Pour Restaurant Group, it falls in line with many of the other neighboring spots in being open for lunch, happy hour and dinner daily and has an eclectic new American menu with a little something for all.
Whole Foods’ new coffee and juice bars
Last, but not least, Whole Foods is getting in on the restaurant game. The entire store has been spruced up, joining other area groceries unrolling major changes, with rustic wood panels now on display cases. In addition, they knocked down the existing juice bar and carved out space in the front of the store to open it up and install a new coffee bar (now with nitro cold brew on tap and a special machine to infuse teas) and state-of-the-art juicery with a self-tap station of high-pressure pressed libations. But the real game-changer is the High Tide Bar & Grill being constructed in the back of the store, which the store hopes will be open by July 18. It’s getting its own kitchen, table service and a full menu of appetizers, entrées and desserts with more than 25 plates to choose from.
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