Bantu has closed at Avalon
Bantu, an "Asian fusion" quick serve eatery in Avalon in Alpharetta, has closed. The restaurant, which opened last fall, closed recently but the closure went unnoticed until my friend Jennifer of Gluten Free Go-To Guide noted it today. A second location of Bantu, which I announced in January was planned for Viewpoint in midtown, is wisely no longer in the works.
Bantu marks the first restaurant closure at the project and second tenant to close following C. Wonder's short stint at the project last year. Another retailer, Boston Proper, simply didn't open their previously announced store at Avalon.
In place of Bantu, "Branch & Barrel, craft kitchen & bar " is scheduled to open in early 2016.
Branch & Barrel will be led by local chef Todd Hogan of Cumming's Branchwater Restaurant. While I was furnished a potential menu for the restaurant, it does not list prices. (Nor does the online Bantu menu, so hey, at least they are consistent.) The menu leans heavily towards southern inspired dishes, a stark contrast from the prior concept.
Why do you think Bantu fared so poorly? Do you think they could have done better elsewhere, or was the concept just bad? Do you think Branch & Barrel, with a completely different menu, will succeed?
Please share your thoughts below.