Photographs by Democrat-Gazette file photo
The Del Frisco’s Grille in west Little Rock will close this weekend.
Originally published June 7, 2018 at 04:30a.m., updated June 7, 2018 at 05:40p.m.
Del Frisco's Grille, in the Promenade at Chenal, 17711 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock, is closing. A restaurant worker confirmed Tuesday morning to Arkansas Online that its last day in business will be Sunday. It has been the only Arkansas location for the Southlake, Texas-based chain (a junior cousin of Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House), which opened in September 2015. The phone number is (501) 448-2631.
Restaurateur Jerry Barakat is well along in the move of his contiguous Little Rock restaurants Arthur's Prime Steakhouse and its seafood-based sibling, Oceans at Arthur's, from the Village at Rahling Road, 27 Rahling Circle, into the vacant Riverside Acura and Subaru dealership, about two miles south, at 16100 Chenal Parkway. He says Oceans, in the former Subaru building, is likely to open a little ahead of the original Aug. 1 schedule -- "end of June, first [week] of July" -- while Arthur's, in the former Acura building, is right on target, "end of July, top of August." Between them will be covered patio seating. Both places will offer considerably more elbow room for staff and customers -- Oceans will have 5,500 square feet; Arthur's, nearly doubling in size to 12,600 square feet, will now have a banquet room and a handful of private dining rooms, one of them in a special new wine cellar. Barakat says he'll probably close for one or two days, but no more, to complete the transition. The hours for both restaurants will remain the same -- 5-9:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 5-10:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. Sunday -- and so will the phone number: (501) 821-1838.
Wednesday is now the target opening date for Cathead's Diner, 515 Shall Ave., inside the Paint Factory building in Little Rock's East Village. Hours, at least initially, will be 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. A lunchtime "hot line" with what chef Donnie Ferneau Jr. describes as "a buffet mentality between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. for lunch ... quick but scratch-made," will let patrons flow quickly in and out. Sunday brunch will tentatively include a buffet, champagne cocktails and an espresso bar. Ferneau and his business partner, head baker Kelli Marks, are essentially dividing the kitchen into "sweet" and "savory" sections; patrons' "bread" options on sandwiches, etc., will be the namesake cathead biscuit (so namesaked because it's the size of a cat's head), Texas toast or doughnut. The Southern comfort food-theme menu will include fried and roast chicken, barbecue, beef tenderloin, Clover's pink lemonade pie ("named after my grandmother," Marks explains) and a sticky-bun skillet. A liquor license is in place. The phone number, for the moment, is (501) 801-0843.
We reported last week the reopening of B-Side Bistro, in the Market Place Shopping Center, 11121 N. Rodney Parham Road, after some "remodeling and reorganization," but owners Barbara and Tom Fuge neglected to tell us that the "reorganization" also included a name change: according to a posting on the front door, it's now to be called The Happy Egg. And the hours have changed -- now 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday. The remodeling involved mostly cosmetic changes to the dining room and major upgrades to the two now-universal bathrooms. The phone number is still (501) 716-2700.
We also reported last week that Sky Modern Japanese Restaurant, Pleasant Ridge Town Center, 11525 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, would stay open during current construction, but we've since found out just what they're building: an additional dining room, with seating for 50-60, over what had previously been a patio. The "Lounge Room" will be available for regular customers, managers explain, but they'll also be able to close it off for private parties. They're looking to get it open by the end of August or the beginning of September. The phone number is (501) 224-4300.
Assuming all permits come through on time, June 18 is now the target opening date for Ira's, 311 Main St., Little Rock, with lunch service starting July 2. Namesake Ira Mittelman brags in a recent Facebook post that he'll be serving exclusively grass-fed beef from Tasmania: "The cows go from mother's milk to grass. They never eat anything else. They spend their lives in the pasture, never in a stockyard." The fairly upscale menu will include a filet and a rib-eye, plus gravlax, Gulf Coast oysters on the half-shell, lamb shanks, duck in a Grand Marnier sauce, salmon en papillote, shrimp and Gouda chipotle grits, cioppino and linguine with basil pesto or clam sauce. Oh, and Mittelman has added Jeffrey Moore, formerly of B-Side and the Terry's Finer Foods, to his kitchen staff. The bar will open at 4 p.m.; dinner starts at 5 p.m. Monday-Saturday with closing hours depending on the volume of business. Mittelman will share valet parking with the other four restaurant-bars already open on that block (Bruno's, Samantha's, Soul Fish and Brewski's) and presumably with his next-door neighbor, the downtown branch of west Little Rock Asian-fusion restaurant A.W. Lin's, which is still in progress with a late-fall target opening. Ira's phone number is (501) 902-4911; the website: irasrestaurant.com.
Cantina Cinco de Mayo No. 3, 521 Center St., has been closed this week as the building management is reportedly fixing the air conditioning. The air, or lack thereof, had been part of the long-running dispute between the building management and management of the space's former tenant, Jerky's Spicy Chicken and More. Our call to the phone number -- (501) 400-8194 -- went to voicemail.
Loca Luna, 3519 Old Cantrell Road, Little Rock, is, as of this weekend, now also open for Saturday brunch, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., in addition to its Sunday brunch hours, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., and joining Mark Abernathy's next-door Red Door, 3701 Cantrell Road, in serving brunch both days. The phone number is (501) 663-4666; the website, LocaLuna.com.
The 1,848 square-foot former Dunkin' Donuts, 10721 Kanis Road at South Shackleford Road, Little Rock sold May 29 for $1.275 million. The seller was Kanis Estates, LLC., which acquired the property in 2016 for $1.3 million, according to records available online through the Pulaski County assessor's office. The buyer: AKSHAR 5 LLC. Shailesh C. Vora, an El Dorado physician, is listed as the registered agent and organizer of the limited liability corporation. However, "We are not involved in any leasing there so we can't speak to what it will become," explains a Colliers spokesman.
For "2nd Saturday," the Little Rock Farmers Market, in the River Market Pavilions, 400 President Clinton Ave., Little Rock, will feature master gardeners answering questions about lawns and gardens and providing select plantings (while supplies last), 8 a.m.-1 p.m.; music from the 106th Army Band's Funkle Sam (the band and its component ensembles are performing across the state through July 3), 9-10 a.m. on the Market Hall's eastside David's Burgers Patio; Lil' Farmers kids club, 10-11 a.m., with activities to teach youngsters about food and promote "healthy eating"; and a blood drive, in partnership with the Arkansas Blood Institute, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (donors receive a free T-shirt and a complimentary pass for Magic Springs and Crystal Falls) -- call (877) 340-8777 or visit arkbi.org to schedule an appointment. Also, 8 a.m.-noon, the Farmers Market will kick off a "Fresh Food Drive Partnership" between the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Arkansas Foodbank and the Society of St. Andrews. Patrons can buy fresh produce and donate it to Arkansas Foodbank pantries. Society of St. Andrews volunteers will staff the table each Saturday through Sept. 29. Call (501) 375-2552 or visit RiverMarket.info or facebook.com/LRFarmersMarket.
David's Burgers opened its 10th location -- and its second in Conway -- May 30 in the Lewis Crossing Shopping Center, 1200 S. Amity Road, Conway. Hours are 10:45 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 10:45 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday. The phone number is (501) 703-0571; the website: davidsburgers.com. We're still awaiting word on just what, exactly, paterfamilias David "Alan" Bubbus is planning to do with the former Mexico Chiquito, 13924 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, which a company he runs recently bought.
Beehive Neighborhood Hangout, a new gastropub, will have its grand opening and ribbon-cutting today at 220 Minorca Road, Hot Springs Village, formerly the Village and Beehive Floral Shop. Chef Ben Dodson, formerly of Hot Springs restaurant Zoe's in the District, has put together a menu of mostly "shareable plates, made fresh daily with local ingredients," according to the website, beehivehsv.com, including caprese skewers, pork piccata bites, spinach-stuffed mushrooms, Hawaiian pork bites, "Bleu Bites" ("our shareable version of classic Cordon Bleu with fresh prosciutto and aged Swiss cheese"), steak skewers and Stout Mac-n-Cheese ("elbow pasta smothered in our queso, infused with Bubba Brews 10-Pt Bock and topped with browned panko crumbs"), plus paninis, sliders and flatbreads and desserts. Co-owner Cindi Erickson says the menu will adjust more or less monthly to take advantage of seasonal ingredients "or things that become available to us." The place has a large bar, serving a variety of hand-crafted cocktails and local craft beers, and "fabulous rustic decor," according to the website, with Saturday-night entertainment Tuesday night pub quizzes. "Guaranteed open" hours: 4-10 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 4-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday, with a 4-6 p.m. Tuesday-Friday Happy Hour; the kitchen closes at 9. The phone number is (501) 777-8176; the Facebook page, facebook.com/beehivehsv.
Little Rock culinary luminaries Mark Abernathy; Mary Beth Ringgold of Cajun's Wharf, Capers and Copper Grill; and Lynn Darnell of Rock Town Distillery, joined Bentonvillers Rob Nelson (chef), Katherine O'Leary-Cole (sous chef/sommelier) and Scott Baker (mixologist) of Tusk & Trotter; Roman Davis of Brightwater: A Center for the Study of Food; and Josiah Moody of Bike Rack Brewery, May 31-Sunday at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival. Their purpose, according to a news release from the Arkansas Department of Parks & Tourism: to showcase Arkansas food and drink offerings, entice media coverage, "build relationships with food writers and attract influencers to visit The Natural State and share their experiences." The Arkansas contingent also led several events throughout the festival: For "Destination Delicious," Abernathy, Nelson (both of whom serve on the festival's advisory council) and Ringgold prepared a variety of Southern dishes and Darnell, Moody and Baker served beer and cocktails with an Arkansas focus. Baker, Nelson and O'Leary-Cole covered Arkansas' "unique variety of charcuterie" for "Arkansas Bacon: The Ozark Ham," and Abernathy presented a session titled "Bringing It Back: New Age Tamales."
And if your restaurant is planning something special for Father's Day, please rush us the details -- deadline is noon Monday -- and we'll run the list of whatever we have in the June 14 column.
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, P.O. Box 2221, Little Rock, Ark. 72203. Send email to:
Weekend on 06/07/2018
ArkansasOnline.com for only
$0.99 for the first month.