For the past couple months, the windows at 300 Main street, formerly the site of such noteworthy establishments as Cielo Mexican Bistro and St. Pete's Dancing Marlin, have been papered over. Rumors swirled that a coffee shop was finally coming to downtown's hottest block of bars and restaurants, but no one had much in the way of specifics.
Who was behind it? What was it called? When would it open?
At last, it's time to reveal some details.
Meet The Honeymoon Cafe & Bar, a collaboration between Goro & Gun/Bad News Bar partners Brad Moore and Ryan Rouse and Boomtown Coffee owners Matthew Toomey and Charlotte Mitchell. Set to open this spring (hopefully no later than April), The Honeymoon takes its inspiration from cafes in New Orleans where a person can get a coffee in the morning, a sandwich for lunch and a drink in the evening.
Is The Honeymoon the final piece that turns the 300 block of Main from nighttime hot spot to neighborhood destination?
The Honeymoon partners think that a casual cafe helps fill in the range of businesses on the block and will give area office workers an early morning destination. "We think The Honeymoon will complete the block, make it feel alive from morning until night and really create the sense of neighborhood that the north end of downtown needs," Moore said in a statement.
The design takes its inspiration from New Orleans, with a back bar that extends to the ceiling and is divided into three sections that will be surrounded with exposed bulbs. Rouse thinks it might be the group's best-looking concept to date, which is saying something given how attractive Bad News is.
In addition to the four partners, Bad News Bar co-owner Justin Burrow will assist Rouse in creating a menu of classic cocktails and former Brasserie 19 chef Amanda McGraw will provide a menu of baked goods, sandwiches, charcuterie plates and what Moore promises will be "badass desserts."
Toomey is excited about reuniting with McGraw. They worked together previously at Tiny Boxwood where he tells CultureMap she "solidified the kitchen." Similar to her role as a consultant for Siphon Coffee, McGraw will be creating a menu that includes housemade muffins, quiche, sandwiches, salads and soup.
"After working for years at the St James Cheese Company in New Orleans and Houston Dairymaids, I am very excited to put together cheese and charcuterie plates and watch people enjoy them with a great bottle of wine," Mitchell said in her own statement.
As with the food and cocktails, Toomey has obtained a gleaming Slayer Espresso machine to serve a menu of classic menu of coffee options that will be a paired down version of Boomtown's selection. In addition, since the 3,800 square foot space is so expansive, Boomtown will relocate its coffee roaster to The Honeymoon.
Burrow and Moore's cocktails will focus on classic recipes as well as an extensive selection of aperitifs, digestifs, fortified wines and liqueurs and a seasonal, Old World-focused wine selection.
"We also thought it would be rad to go all out with an expansive list of liqueurs that are harder to find around town," Rouse said in a statement. "We really want this to be a place people can start a night with a bottle of champagne or enjoy an after dinner drink and caffe corretto with dessert."
Is The Honeymoon the final piece that turns the 300 block of Main from nighttime hot spot to neighborhood destination? Will Boomtown Coffee lure Heights residents downtown? Sound off in the comments.