River Market changes | Rock Candy

Monday, November 5, 2007

River Market changes

Posted By on Mon, Nov 5, 2007 at 3:41 PM

On Oct. 31, the Community Bakery outlet in the River Market closed. Community Bakery’s Joe Fox said that the shop was more or less breaking even. To improve business, he said he would need a larger space, which, after several requests, didn’t seem forthcoming. Fox said that he had a tentative arrangement with the adjacent Hardin’s River Mercantile to continue to sell its baked goods through their storefront, but on Monday, Hardin’s had cleared its space and posted closed signs. Proprietor Jody Hardin couldn’t be reached before deadline, but a source close to him said he’d closed shop following an argument with River Market management over whether or not he could sell donuts out of his space. River Market manager Shannon Light laughed off that suggestion and said, as far she knew, the mercantile is “still trying to pull things together.”

Boulevard’s Scott McGehee is 99.9% sure he’ll be setting up a new restaurant concept down the street from his flagship bakery and cafe. After originally targeting the Pleasant Ridge Town Center in west Little Rock, McGehee and longtime pal John Beachboard (currently the chef de cuisine at Valentine’s Ballpark Restraunt) are poised now to bring their wood-oven pizza joint to the former home of Luchessi’s in the Heights Theater. According to McGehee, Za-Za Fine Salad and Wood-Oven Pizza will specialize in Napoli-style pizza and lush and inventive salads. It’ll also feature premium wine by the glass, draft beer, Italian-style espresso, cafe latte and homemade gelato. Even though he’s been making gelato for years, McGehee is soon to travel to New York for five days for school from the Italian masters. Other possible menu items include 25 oz. Tuscan porterhouse steaks and Tuscan baby-back ribs. The restaurateur hopes to open by March 1, April 1 at the latest.

The plastic sheathing on the front of Cotham’s in the City won’t affect your chicken and dumplings and fried okra. The restaurant is just having its exterior painted.

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