Monthly Archives: June 2014

New pizza concept coming to SoMa

Pizzas from the new SoMa pizza spot will be made in the Neapolitan style, like this one.

Pizzas from the new SoMa pizza spot will be made in the Neapolitan style, like this one.

A new Neapolitan-style pizza restaurant is slated to open at 1318 S. Main St. in Little Rock later this summer. The as-yet-unnamed restaurant is being opened by chef Jason Neidhardt (formerly of Packet House Grill) along with partners Bart Barlogie (co-owner of The Fold), Eric Nelson and Jamie Moses.

The restaurant will focus mainly on pizza, with a selection of salads and Italian-focused appetizers (think charcuterie) and will be open for both lunch and dinner. The space will also feature a sizable bar with craft beer and cocktails available that owner Jason Neidhardt says should fall somewhere between the South on Main concoctions down the street and the plastic cup shots at Midtown Billiards next door.

A peek at what the menu will include: the Farmer with smoked chiles, pancetta, shaved pecorino, escarole and local eggs; the Anchovy with mozzarella, capers, white anchovy and black pepper; and the Gorgonzola with olive oil, Gorgonzola dolce, fingerling potato, radicchio and rosemary.

You may remember the location as the former home of Pleazures Martini Lounge, but rest assured, the space will be completely revamped. The space … Read more >

Diamond Bear Brewing to release Southern Blonde in cans

Picture 2North Little Rock-based brewery Diamond Bear is moving into the world of craft cans this summer. The brewery’s Southern Blonde will be available in cans by the end of July.

Diamond Bear Brewing owner Russ Melton says that the recipe for the brew has also been “tweaked to make it more like a session beer, more of a Caribbean lager than anything else.”

The cans are being manufactured in Olive Branch, Miss. Melton says Southern Blonde will now only be distributed in cans, while the rest of Diamond Bear’s line will remain available in bottles.

“The canned segment is 60 percent of the market, and we’re excited to really open that up,” Melton says.

Look for the cans to hit Arkansas shelves around July 14.… Read more >

The Pantry to close for kitchen renovations July 1-10

Everyone’s favorite Czech-ish restaurant The Pantry will close from July 1-10 for a kitchen remodel, managers announced today.

You can get your last fix before the temporary closing on Sunday, June 29 from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (They’re typically closed Sundays).

The Rodney Parham restaurant will be back up and running July 11. As for the second location of The Pantry, planned for former home of The House in Hillcrest? Expect that to open in late August.… Read more >

New brewery and distillery to open in Eureka Springs

Eureka Springs Ale House and Distillery

Eureka Springs Ale House and Distillery

Arkansas beer lovers who like to weekend to our northwest will enjoy the news that Eureka Springs has a brewery on the way.

The Eureka Springs Ale House and Distillery is set to open at 426 W. Van Buren (just a half mile or so from Thorncrown Chapel) during the first week of July.

Owners Conn Hutzell and Tara Puzey plan to feature local craft brews on tap while they get their brewing operation off the ground.

“I’ve been around brewing as long as I can remember,” says Hutzell, who explained that the operation will be a true nanobrewery, brewing around a barrel at a time.

The ale house will also feature a menu of pub classics like burgers and fish and chips, sourcing locally as much as possible. The space is set to include a large patio and outdoor beer garden, complete with bocce court.

“The beer garden itself will be the largest in Arkansas at over half an acre,” Hutzell says. “We want people to feel comfortable bringing in lawn chairs or blankets and just hanging out.”

Once the brewing operation is up and running (expect a kolsh and brown ale to … Read more >

ICYMI: Starving Artist shutters, Le Pops to open soon

Paula Martin MorellA little restaurant news to get your week started, in case you missed it:

Argenta’s Starving Artist Cafe shuttered suddenly this weekend. A post to the restaurant’s Facebook page from chef Jason Morrell indicated that Saturday’s dinner would be their last.

“It’s been a labor of love, an artistic project offering a healthy alternative to the mainstream. We hope you enjoyed experiencing it as much as I did making it,” the post read.

Starving Artist had changed ownership in October 2013, with co-owner and Tales from the South host Paula Morrell leaving the business.

According to Paula, the show will continue this week at the Argenta branch of the Laman Library before branching out to new locations locally and around Arkansas.

In happier restaurant news…
The brick and mortar Le Pops at 5501 Kavanaugh should be open in the next two weeks, according to a post on their Facebook page. In addition to their ice lollies, expect shaved ice with natural syrups and other “treats.”… Read more >