When socializing was limited during the COVID pandemic David Heymann and Jeff Kimmel gained a heightened appreciation for the joys of hanging out with friends particularly while sipping high-end craft beers. It was then that they began thinking of opening a taproom.
“I live in DeKalb County, and I know its cities well,” Heymann said. “I feel Chamblee has a unique charm—a true downtown area—that makes it especially well suited for the sort of place we had in mind. We decided it would be amazing if we could open a place in Chamblee. We began looking for a suitable building.”
After finding what they considered an idea location adjacent to City Hall and the future Chamblee Town Center, the team engaged Vickers Design Group “to strike the perfect balance of modern yet casual design,” they said in an announcement of the soon-to-open business. The taproom is to be equipped with 20 taps “pouring a unique selection of beer and wine, showcasing an array of out-of-market beers on tap sprinkled with local gems.”
There was only one problem with the building, Heymann recalled. “It was much larger than we needed for the taproom so we asked ourselves what we could do with the extra space. It occurred to us that the main reason people enjoying time in a taproom would leave would be to get something to eat,” he said.
Heymann said he and Kimmel then began to “kick the tires” on ideas for the sorts of food establishments that would work there. “We considered what food offerings would complement our craft beers. Also, we thought about what would bring something new to the area. There already was a fried chicken place and pizza place nearby. We decided we didn’t want types of food that already were available within half a mile of our place.”
The plan already included a coffee shop to be run by Heymann’s wife, Leigh. Sidecar Coffee, he said, will offer a variety of standard espresso drinks as well as specialty and iced lattes with drip coffee, cold brew, and teas rounding out the drink menu. The coffee shop will also serve “a curated selection of small plates and bakery items, focusing on fresh and healthy offerings,” Heymann said.
Chamblee Tap & Market has partnered with terra alma, which describes itself as a “boutique real estate advisory,” to curate the food hall with a goal of creating “a vibrant destination where community, cuisine, and culture converge…as the city focuses on enhancing the pedestrian-friendly nature of Broad Street.”
Chamblee Tap & Market recently announced a new food partner. Southern Grace, which started as a food truck before becoming a brick-and-mortar eatery, is the latest addition to what the entrepreneurs are referring to as a “micro food hall.”
“This partnership marks a significant milestone for both Southern Grace and Chamblee Tap & Market as they join forces to bring delectable Southern cuisine to the heart of Chamblee,” the partners said in a joint announcement that included Southern Grace chef and owner Delorean Ostrom‘s comment, “After seeing the neighborhood, building and meeting David and Jeff, we were ready to go.”
Southern Grace, which features Southern-inspired dishes, will offer what the restaurant calls “an array of culinary delights,” including all-day breakfast sandwiches, signature dishes such as shrimp and grits, a pork belly breakfast taco, meatloaf sandwich, pulled pork mac and cheese, smoked crab cake, lobster roll, and salads. “Every time I try something new from their menu, I’m even more delighted that Southern Grace is part of our project,” Heymann said.
Heymann and his partners predicted that Chamblee Tap & Market’s micro food hall will become “a hotspot in the historic downtown district.” The location also is to include a private event space.
The original plan called for opening Chamblee Tap & Market in late fall 2023, but Heymann said the full opening may be pushed to winter of 2024 with a soft opening somewhere in between.
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