Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Subway's Departure Leaves Room For New Concept Downtown

New concept coming to downtown Atlanta

As first reported by my friends at Scoop OTP, a new fast casual flatbread eatery plans to open soon in downtown Atlanta. Situated near the dynamic intersection of Centennial Olympic Park Drive and Marietta Street, steps from CNN Center, Flats will feature "handcrafted flatbreads, paninis and salads as well as artisan juices."  

The 1,200 square foot restaurant space will be heavily renovated and will reportedly see the addition of a small patio.  The space previously housed a Subway restaurant, but fear not, Subway still has a location across the street in CNN Center, as well as at least three near Georgia State.  Popular downtown bar Park Bar is located adjacent to the upcoming eatery, just off COP Drive on Walton Street.

A group of investors and restaurant industry veterans have partnered to bring the concept to market.  

One of the partners, chef Scott Kinsey, operates the five-unit, Latin-Asian concept Taqueria Tsunami.  Before opening Taqueria Tsunami, Kinsey spent nearly eighteen years in senior chef capacities with Brinker International and later Hooters of America, where his wife was head of public relations for nearly ten years.  

Scott Kinsey and his wife Alexis are co-owners of Fork U Concepts, LLC.  Fork U Concepts includes Taqueria Tsunami and single locations of both Stockyard Burgers & Bones and Pressed Panini Bar, both of which are located on the Marietta Square.  Taqueria Tsunami's original location in south Buckhead closed in late 2012, and is now home to the popular full service restaurant, 1Kept Kitchen & Bar. 

It's highly likely that Flats will have some similarity to Pressed, but likely at a slightly higher cost.  I'm told the targeted average check is about eleven bucks, on the high end of the "fast casual" segment.  

The panini or flatbread is nothing new, but is not currently available in such variety in any downtown locale that I'm aware of.   

A similar concept, My Panini, closed in 2009 after a short run in Lindbergh City Center, adjacent to the Lindbergh MARTA station.  

While being near MARTA and AT&T (now Cricket at Lindbergh) is great, it's hard to secure a better, more visible location for a new restaurant than Flats has.  A large billboard sits atop the restaurant and the eatery is a short walk from CNN Center, the World of Coca-Cola, Philips Arena, the Georgia World Congress Center, the Georgia Dome, Centennial Olympic Park, SkyView Atlanta and the Tabernacle, among others.  

I'm not much of a fan of Subway, so if Flats is anything like my beloved but shuttered Miro Cafe in SoHo New York, I'll be all over it....when I'm downtown. 

Pending permitting, plans call for Flats to open late summer / early fall.  

What are your thoughts on this new eatery?  Are you disappointed you will have one less Subway in Atlanta?  What is your favorite downtown eatery?  

Please share your thoughts below.  


Sundiata Bradshaw said...

lol one less Subway? Have you ever had Jersey Mike's,Schlotzsky's or Roly Poly?

Anonymous said...

I guess one fewer Subway in the world sort of offsets the karmic harm created by Arby's taking one of the spots on the new Broad street pedestrian mall.