Small Bites: Another new restaurant comes to Broadway

The building that housed the recently closed Tingles Cafe at 27 Broadway St. is undergoing a facelift, and a new restaurant will be opening in its place. Zoe Rose, slated to open on Tuesday, July 5, will feature a fast, affordable and accessible menu for lunch, dinner and brunch, says owner Derrick Todd.

A recent transplant from New Orleans, Todd brings 30 years of restaurant-industry experience and has hired chef Lauren Beall, a Johnson and Wales graduate, to execute the menu, still very much a work in progress. The two were deep in menu development when Xpress visited them on June 20 — just two weeks before the planned opening.

"I don't want to be a meat-and-three,” Todd says. “I don't want to be a steakhouse. I don't want to say I'm farm-to-table, but I don't want to say I'm not. Because if I can, I will.”

Though Todd is a bit cryptic about his concept at the moment, he is clear about his intentions to keep prices reasonable. "Price points dictate what you can and can't do," he says. "It will be good, honest food — and a great value for the dollar. I would definitely not classify it as upscale, but I would definitely call it high-quality. Without a doubt, we are going to bring some serious integrity to it, if I'm going to have anything to do with it."

Todd has painted the interior walls of the Broadway building in rich colors, added a counter-height wall that provides some separation between the dining room and the bar area, and added intimate lighting above the bar. He also plans to install booths, bringing a comfortable feeling to what was once a large, high-ceilinged room. "I expect people to want to eat at the bar as much as they would eat at a table,” he says. “I want a Cheers feeling going on in here.”

Todd adds that he doesn’t intend to cater to the tourist industry, and expects to feed the locals on a regular basis, which is why he wants to keep prices low. "I don't care about the bush," he says. "I care about what's in my hand."

Jack and Lesley Groetsch, the former owners of Tingles Cafe, are no longer involved with the restaurant. They remain involved in Sazerac, which is located directly next door. The two businesses share a walk-in cooler.

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