Three empty East Main Street buildings will soon be given new life as a trio of restaurants have announced plans to open soon along the stretch between Cherokee Drive and Maple Row Boulevard.
Myers’ Front Porch
The Langford family, owners of the Black-Eyed Pea, plan to debut a new “fresh fast-casual” concept in their latest offering, Myers’ Front Porch.
Set to open in early December in the former Sweet Cece’s building on Main Street next to the Black-Eyed Pea, the restaurant will serve healthy alternatives not usually found in a fast food restaurant, according to Owner Kori Langford.
Breakfast offerings served all day will include home-made cinnamon rolls, scones and salted caramel cookies, a brisket biscuit and a smoked salmon baguette with capers and onions. Fresh salads, paninis and flavorful side dishes will be the highlight of the lunch and dinner menu.
The restaurant will also offer a coffee and tea bar that will rotate flavors seasonally.
“We really want this to be a community spot,” said Langford, adding the restaurant plans to create a laid-back atmosphere across from scenic Drakes Creek.
Safari’s Brick Oven and Grill
Another face that may be familiar to local diners also has plans to open a restaurant along Main Street next month.
Safari’s Brick Oven and Grill recently submitted an application for a use and occupancy permit through the city’s planning department for the former Tilted Kilt restaurant at 230 East Main Street.
A staple in the Rivergate area for 17 years, Safari’s owner Ross Bobbo says he closed the restaurant 12 years ago to go to work for corporate companies like Cracker Barrell, Logan’s and O’Charley’s.
Bobbo admitted he’s looking forward to returning to the more hands-on, personal nature of the business.
He’ll return with specialty items like marinated beef tenders and cheese fritters, long a favorite item.
“We’ll offer a good variety of food from healthy fare to burgers and sandwiches,” he said. “We’ll make everything on the premises.”
Robbo’s menu will offer a variety of options from pastas and fajitas to Mediterranean fare like hummus and Tabbouleh salad.
He said he plans to begin hiring within the next two weeks and open the restaurant in early December.
Slim Chickens, a fast-casual restaurant chain that features full hand-breaded, cooked-to-order tenderloins, chicken wings and homemade dipping sauces, recently submitted plans to the city for renovations to the former Krispy Kreme building in front of Publix.
“We plan on greatly improving the look of the building,” said Harold Wallace, president of restaurant operations for the business that has more than 60 restaurants in 11 states. Plans include adding a fully covered patio that will feature several television screens, he added.
The franchise also operates a Murfreesboro location and hopes to open more restaurants throughout Middle Tennessee, according to Wallace, who will oversee the Hendersonville location.
“It’s such a great area and it’s growing,” he said.
Designed and built by the doughnut franchise in 2014, the 218 E. Main Street building has sat vacant since Krispy Kreme closed in early 2016.
Wallace said Slim Chickens plans to hire 75 to 80 employees and open in the Spring of 2018.