10 newcomers to the Southern culinary scene that are worth a summer road trip all on their own
The small 122-room boutique property Hotel Genevieve is now open with four distinct culinary options headed by chef Ashleigh Shanti. Rosettes is an all-day restaurant inspired by Parisian cafes and named for the ribbons won in horse races. Bar Genevieve offers rooftop cocktails and street food in a brasserie-style setting. Lucky Penny is an intimate speakeasy open for cocktails and bar snacks late into the night. Mini Marché, the fourth and final option, will be a neighborhood market for local grab-and-go provisions.
Carmel, the sixth restaurant concept from Oliva Restaurant Group, is now open at Buckhead Village in Atlanta. Inspired by the shores of California and the Yucatan Peninsula, as well as ORG founder Tal Baum’s upbringing on the Mediterranean coast, the full-service restaurant and bar’s breezy, coastal atmosphere provides a welcoming spot for guests to gather over lunch, dinner, brunch, drinks, and pastries and coffee.
James Beard award-nominated chef Kevin Johnson and his wife Susan, who opened The Grocery in downtown Charleston in 2011, recently announced the opening of their second property, Lola Rose, set to open in summer, 2023. Building on the same neighborhood spirit that The Grocery brought to Charleston more than a decade ago, Lola Rose aims to offer a neighborhood haunt for Mount Pleasant, with Mediterranean cuisine in a relaxed, convivial setting.
Equipment Room is a new high-fidelity vinyl bar located in the basement of Bunkhouse’s Hotel Magdalena. The spot is the product of a collaboration between James Moody, local owner of a downtown music venue, Amar Lalvani, and co-owners of Breakaway Records, Josh LaRue and Gabe Vaughn. The first music-centric venue on Austin’s Music Lane draws inspiration from Japanese kissas—tiny hideaway clubs in cities like Tokyo and Kyoto where music enthusiasts share their vinyl collections—marrying the Japanese origins of these clubs with vinyl culture’s height in the 70s.
Cheetie Kumar and partner, Paul Siler, will open Ajja in Raleigh’s Five Points neighborhood in early summer 2023. The Hindi/Urdu word for “come over,” Ajja invokes a destination that is celebratory and inviting. The menu draws on the diverse foodways and cultures, vibrant spices, and cooking techniques of the Mediterranean, the Middle East, and beyond.
An approachable new restaurant inside The Veil Brewing Co.’s flagship taproom, Nokoribi opened in April 2023. Inspired by the Japanese dish Yakitori, Nokoribi, which translates to “embers” in Japanese, will showcase Japanese pub-inspired menu items. Highlights from the menu include “karaage” (fried) like pork katsu sando with cabbage and tonkatsu sauce and maitake mushroom with spicy mayo, and udon with warm dashi butter, mushroom, tamari egg yolk, and katsuobushi.
Nestled in the heart of Asheville, The Restoration Hotel boasts not only pristine views and prime location, but also exquisite dining experiences. The Exchange, the on-site restaurant and bar, offers dishes inspired by the Appalachian landscape and seasonally rich flavors. Complimenting The Exchange, is The Observatory, a refined rooftop bar with ample natural lighting, small plates, and a lengthly cocktail menu.
Named after the mythical mermaid, Yara is set to accommodate everyday dining and special occasions alike. Led by acclaimed Chef Yuki Nakandakari, a prestigious Japanese and Peruvian chef with Michelin Guide credentials, the menu is approachable and exciting, featuring classic Peruvian dishes and several Japanese-inspired signatures. Yara is a rooftop bar with a spectacular view of Capitol Hill’s skyline.
Committed to offering dining with class, quality, and style, Lapeer Steak & Seafood in Birmingham will feature a chef-driven menu of steakhouse classics and fresh seafood. Dishes will include crispy whole branzino with sauce piccata, fried capers, lemon, chives, herb salad and crispy marbled potato and multiple customizable premium cuts of steaks. To pair, guests can indulge in Lapeer’s take on classic cocktails plus or peruse a robust wine list featuring an extensive selection of New and Old World varietals.
Equipment Room is a new high fidelity vinyl bar located in the basement of Bunkhouse’s Hotel Magdalena, is a collaboration with James Moody, local owner of a downtown music venue, Amar Lalvani, and co-owners of Breakaway Records, Josh LaRue and Gabe Vaughn. The first music-centric venue on Austin’s Music Lane draws inspiration from Japanese kissas—tiny hideaway clubs in cities like Tokyo and Kyoto where music enthusiasts share their vinyl collections—marrying the Japanese roots of vinyl bars with the height of vinyl culture in the 70’s.
Executive chef and owner Chaz Lindsay brings a refined and fresh take on traditional Italian cuisine with an elegant Southern twist to Jackson, Mississippi, with the opening of Pulito Osteria. Offering bold yet sophisticated flavors served family-style during dinner service, coupled with a warm and inviting atmosphere right in the heart of Belhaven Town Center, Lindsay holds true to his authentic roots while bridging the worlds of Italy and the Deep South with a thoughtful menu.
Check out these 10 recently opened and soon-to-open restaurants from Miami to Louisville, with Lebanese mezze to rustic Italian food and Spanish vermouth bars.
- by Tate Jacaruso
- by TLP's Partners