Veggie-forward restaurant Gardner, from the owners of Contigo, will officially open Monday. at 1914 E. Sixth St. in the old U.S. Post Office building.
The restaurant will be open Sunday-Wednesday from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. and Thursday-Saturday from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. The gorgeous restaurant (a collaboration between Baldridge Architects, CC Designs & Ann Lowe Design) has an open-air lounge area, utilizes brick from the old post office inside, and features a handsome dining room full of slate grays and handcrafted wooden furniture, with a horizontal skylight filling the space with natural light. The bar, which will initially serve beer and wine, is tucked away at the back of the restaurant and can be accessed directly from the parking lot.
Andrew Francisco, formerly of Mettle and Olivia, will serve as the chef de cuisine for the restaurant owned by Ben Edgerton and executive chef Andrew Wiseheart. The initial menu includes a section of one- or two-bite plates such as sunchoke custard with seaweed and crispy onions, and yellow squash with bonito butter and pea tendrils. Items from the next section will include dishes like beets with urfa mayo, pine nuts and mint; and cured mackerel with fennel, marigold and elderberry. Entrees include root vegetables with fermented mushroom broth and salted purslane; and dry-aged beef with zucchini and black garlic.
The second location of Counter Café is located in the adjacent space on Sixth Street and owners there said today they expect their diner to be opened sometime in the first week of November. Counter Café will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.