Friday, August 6, 2010

The Doc is Out, New Baby Expected Soon

Earlier this week I reported that Genki Noodles and Sushi is apparently going to take over the Virginia-Highlands location of Everybody's Pizza. This story got a lot of people talking but has yet to be confirmed by Everybody's. Today I bring you more intown news on which I have just received confirmation. Raving Brands has sold their original Doc Green's Salads and Grill on Ponce de Leon Avenue. The Doc Green's chain has never experienced the growth Raving Brands envisioned for it, and rather than continue to operate the midtown location (a corporate store), they sold it. The buyers, Chip and Carol Joyner, plan to convert the restaurant into The Real Chow Baby, New American Stir Fry.

You will recall that a few weeks ago I reported that Mike Blum, founder of Chow Baby, had rebranded the Galleria location as Big Chow Grill - A Stir Fry Evolution, and is no longer involved in the Chow Baby brand. Interestingly, Chip remains an investor in Big Chow Grill. Chip's father Darren is now the sole owner of the Howell Mill location of Chow Baby. What confuses me is why Chip and Carol would put a Chow Baby so close to the Howell Mill location: less than 3 miles separate the two. The biggest flaws with Howell Mill were lack of plentiful parking and a single ordering line. Both of these were corrected when the Galleria location was opened. With over 500 parking spaces, a dual stir fry line and a larger interior to boot, the Howell Mill location looks like a prototype in comparison.

The new Ponce site would seem to be a step further backward, as it offers even less parking and less inside seating along with what will likely be a single stir fry line. Additionally, getting in and out of the site on any given day can be troublesome, as it's located on Ponce, and there is no turn lane. Seating wise, Howell Mill offers indoor seating for 110 and outdoor for 48, as a Doc Green's, the new Chow Baby sat 74 inside and 36 on their patio. Call me crazy, but this seems to not be the right concept for the space. Construction began yesterday so it's too early to see what the renovation will entail but I'm told they plan to be open by October. ToNeTo Atlanta

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Anonymous said...

It belongs on the Deathlist. Terrible location for a restaurant, food is even worse. Not even the Emos will eat that stuff.

Anonymous said...

Mike Blum is a crook. Besides the fact that just about every food distributorship in atlanta has cut off deliveries to big chow grill because of non payment, he doesn't even pay his employees on time; sometimes up to a week late. And now that he has lost his liquor license, he is abandoning the concept to open up some place called yum buns. He is nothing but a swindler with absolutely no business skills.