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The 33 Most Anticipated Restaurant Openings of Fall 2012

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Though summer isn't yet over, it's time to check in on 33 of the most anticipated restaurant openings in the U.S. for the Fall and, in some cases, late Summer. There's Stephanie Izard's Little Goat and Curtis Duffy's Grace in Chicago; a seafood shack from a celebrated L.A. chef (Michael Cimarusti's Connie & Ted's); in New York City, Masa Takayama's teppanyaki concept (Tetsu) and Andrew Carmellini's return to French cooking; Bryan Voltaggio's first DC project (Range); an oyster bar from the folks behind Charleston's Fig (The Ordinary); Michael Schwartz's restaurant in the historic Miami hotel The Raleigh; a Thai project in Austin from the La Condesa team (Sway); and much, much more.

Many thanks to the Eater city editors, as well as the Ulterior Epicure, for their contributions. Feel free to nominate your picks in the comments.


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The Ordinary

Location: Charleston, SC
Chef: Mike Lata
Projected Opening: September

Adam Nemirow and Beard Award-winner Mike Lata, the duo behind Charleston, South Carolina's acclaimed FIG, will open an oyster bar in September. After keeping details under wraps, they announced the name, The Ordinary, three months ago. The space will be part of the new Midtown multi-use development, and Lata hopes it will be an energetic "community restaurant" for people to stop in for a drink, snack, or full meal.
[Photo credit]


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Stars

Location: Charleston, SC
Chef: Nathan Thurston
Projected Opening: August/September

When it opens, Stars will boast three levels and a roof deck that overlooks all of Charleston's Upper King. But it's not just the view that most people will head to the restaurant for, since this is Chef Nathan Thurston's new place. Thurston, who had been at The Ocean Room at The Sanctuary, is bringing his talents right to the city with this one (The Ocean Room was in Kiawah, about thirty minutes away). Thurston recently revealed a menu item, lobster and grits, which is a preparation of lobster presented whole and shelled, “big grits," wood-grilled tamworth ham, charred corn, sweet corn cream, and tomato jam.
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Square Root

Location: New Orleans, LA
Chef: Phillip Lopez
Projected Opening: TBD

New Orleans is getting its own intimate, tasting-menu-only restaurant courtesy of Chef Phillip Lopez. Lopez is the man behind Root, which opened last year and is one of the most ambitious restaurants in the city. At Square Root, he plans on serving ten or fifteen course tasting menus to a small group of guests. Back when the project was announced, Lopez told Eater, "I want to give Michelin guide a reason to come to New Orleans and rate us."
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Dominique's on Magazine

Location: New Orleans, LA
Chef: Dominique Macquet
Projected Opening: September

Last November Dominique Macquet closed his small, insanely busy restaurant Dominique's on Magazine — which was named one of Esquire's best new restaurants in 2011 — to find a new, larger space. Finally, after a few delays, the restaurant will reopen next month. He's even got the same chef de cuisine, Trent Osborne, coming aboard.
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Pastaria

Location: St. Louis, MO
Chef: Gerard Craft
Projected Opening: September

The celebrated St. Louis chef Gerard Craft, of Niche, is opening up a restaurant in the 30,000 square-foot Centene Plaza retail space at 7700 Forsyth Boulevard. It will be an "artisanal, pasta-centric" restaurant with friendly price points and a casual environment. He spoke about the project in a recent Eater interview. NB Craft will be moving Niche to the same area.
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Rye

Location: Leawood, Kansas
Chef: Colby & Megan Garrelts
Projected Opening: November

Colby and Megan Garrelts, who earned acclaim and a following at Kansas City's bluestem for their refined takes on Midwestern cuisine, are opening up a second restaurant in the Trezo Vino space they recently signed on to consult for. It was set to be called Native 34, but it's now going to be called Rye. According to the chef, the team hopes to "evoke and reflect the heritage of the Midwest, its flavors and feel, but done with quality ingredients and clean plating."
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Grace

Location: Chicago, IL
Chef: Curtis Duffy
Projected Opening: late October

It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that Grace, the first restaurant from former Avenues chef Curtis Duffy, is the most ambitious opening in Chicago this year. What we know at this point: it occupies a 5,000 square-foot space in the West Loop and will likely showcase personal, authorial cooking from Duffy. Don't bank on it, but some have suggested that the dishes he prepared at a recent dinner in Toronto might make it onto the menu. You can follow Duffy as he opens the restaurant by reading Ulterior Epicure's ongoing series on this site.
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BellyQ

Location: Chicago, IL
Chef: Bill Kim
Projected Opening: Late August/September

With partners that include the Cornerstone Restaurant Group and one Michael Jordan, former Trotter's chef de cuisine Bill Kim (Urbanbelly, Belly Shack) will bring another interpretation of Asian food to Chicago. Billed as an Asian barbecue, Belly Q will offer what their press release refers to as "a flavor palette that's boldly smoky and brightly piquant, with a depth of flavor that sneaks up on you and leaves you wanting more." Potential dishes include tea-smoked duck in a Chinese water smoker, as well as chilled soba noodles with basil and eggplant (it's obviously not strictly barbecue). Also: there will be karaoke.
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The Little Goat

Location: Chicago, IL
Chef: Stephanie Izard
Projected Opening: October

Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard, whose first Chicago restaurant Girl & Goat is always, always packed, will open a diner across the street from that restaurant. Called The Little Goat, it's a collaboration between Izard and the folks at the Boka Group that will open from 7 AM until 2 AM. Izard has said that she plans on selling things like a pulled pork on a pork fat donut, grilled cheese and tomato soup, quail egg chop suey, and plenty of craft beers.
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Punch Bowl Social

Location: Denver, CO
Owner: Robert Thompson
Projected Opening: September

The Punch Bowl Social project was first announced in September 2010, but it's looking like it's going to open its doors almost exactly two years since then. Robert Thompson, the restaurateur spearheading the project, has encountered more than a few problems — asbestos among them — along the way, but that's to be expected when you're trying to launch something that's actually two concepts in one: Punch Bowl, which will include a high-volume bar and snazzy bowling alley, and Social Food & Drink, a diner with an additional patio space. You can learn about the food at Eater Denver.
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Nobu

Location: Las Vegas, NV
Chef: Nobu Matsuhisa
Projected Opening: October

To accompany his 180-room Nobu Hotel in the Caesars Palace, the superstar expansionist Nobu Matsuhisa will be opening a restaurant that's open to the general public. As with several other Nobu restaurants, it's a David Rockwell interior — about 11,200 square feet in this case — and Nobu is said to still be working on tweaking the menu for the setting. He plans on keeping his Hard Rock Las Vegas restaurant open, as well.
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Bacchanal Buffet at Caesars Palace

Location: Las Vegas, NV
Chef: Scott Green
Projected Opening: September 10

Just a few days ago Caesars Palace announced that they'd be unveiling a massive, $17 million buffet at the beginning of September. The new 25,000-square-foot Bacchanal Buffet will feature more than 500 items from nine open kitchens. The space, which overlooks the pool, fits about 600, and executive chef Scott Green plans on making basically everything there.
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The Pass & Provisions

Location: Houston, Texas
Chefs: Seth Siegel-Gardner and Terrence Gallivan
Projected Opening: September

Chefs Seth Siegel-Gardner and Terrence Gallivan met while working in New York and have passed through some impressive kitchens: Aquavit, August, C-House, Aureole, The Modern, The Fat Duck, Viajante, Kata Robata, Alto and Fiamma. They formed a restaurant group, Pilot Light, about two years ago, and sat tight until they found the right space for their first restaurant. Called The Pass and Provisions, it will house two concepts: a fine dining restaurant, The Pass, where chefs will present the dishes to diners and it'll be a slightly more ambitious affair, and Provisions, where they'll be a "mammoth wood-burning oven" and "confident, urban rustic" food.
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Stephen Starr Barbecue Restaurant

Location: Philadelphia, PA
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

Though none of the principals involved in the project have confirmed it publicly, most Philadelphia insiders are pretty much certain that Stephen Starr, the serial restaurateur behind Buddakan, Morimoto, and many other restaurants, will be opening an outpost of the popular and excellent Brooklyn barbecue spot Fette Sau in Fishtown. Follow it all on Eater Philadelphia.
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Boot & Saddle

Location: Philadelphia, PA
Owner: Avram Hornik
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

After being dark for more than a decade, the iconic live music venue Boot & Saddle is coming back to life. That's courtesy of Avram Hornik, who's also got Union Transfer, Morgan's Pier, and Ortlieb's under his belt. What he has planned for the revived space: music almost every night (with acts booked in collaboration with R5 Production), brunch on the weekends, and the same old neon sign outside.
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Mistral

Location: Princeton, NJ
Owner: Scott Anderson
Projected Opening: October/November

Scott Anderson, the chef and owner of destination restaurant Elements in Princeton, NJ, is opening up a neighborhood spot called Mistral. It will be a casual restaurant serving small plates that draw from all of Anderson's interests and experiences. The restaurant will have a wood-fired oven and raw bar, and the chef is working on a charcuterie program and several pastas for the menu. The space has about forty-five seats inside, and when the weather's right, they'll have another forty outside.
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Bronwyn

Location: Boston, MA
Chef: Tim Wiechman
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

This fall, in the Union Square space that used to be Ronnarong Thai Tapas Bar, Tim Wiechman will open Bronwyn. The restaurant, which is named after chef Wiechmann's wife, will serve “new American” cuisine with Austrian, Northern Italian, and especially German influences. There will be an outdoor beer garden with plenty of sausage on the menu and other offerings similar to items on the charcuterie plate at T.W. Food, their other restaurant. The Bronwyn team recently told Eater Boston that there were "no juicy details yet" and that they were still in the process of transferring licenses.
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Unnamed Andrew Carmellini French Project

Location: New York, NY
Chef: Andrew Carmellini
Projected Opening: Late Fall (maybe)

Chinatown Brasserie has vacated its massive space on Lafayette Street to move elsewhere. In its place will come the restaurant that marks Andrew Carmellini's (The Dutch, Locanda Verde) return to French cooking. Though the space is large and airy, Carmellini and his partners insist that it will not be a brasserie.
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Tetsu

Location: New York, NY
Chef: Masa Takayama
Projected Opening: Around Thanksgiving

If Masa Takayama's eponymous restaurant in the Time Warner Center is out of your price range (the case for most, considering it's over $500 a person), there's a chance his follow-up in TriBeCa, Tetsu, will be slightly more accessible. The 124-seat, three-floor space focuses on Teppanyaki and will serve robatayaki, shabu-shabu, and sushi and sashimi.
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The Marrow

Location: New York, NY
Chef: Harold Dieterle
Projected Opening: TBD

The third project from Kin Shop and Perilla chef Harold Dieterle and partner Alicia Nosenzo, The Marrow will now be located in the West Village and not Brooklyn, as was originally planned. The menu will skew Italian and German, with items like "ostrich schnizel with spaetzle, braised cuttlefish with garlic bread and cured pork, bison carpaccio with wild rocket, gooseberries and miso dressing, and straightforward steaks." It's quite the location, right on Bank Street, and Stephen Starr is among those who've vied for it.
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Range

Location: Washington, DC
Chef: Bryan Voltaggio
Projected Opening: mid-November

Bryan Voltaggio, the former Top Chef contestant who's done pretty damn well for himself at Volt, in Frederick, is set to open his first concept in DC proper. He's calling the $10 million project Range, and as he recently explained, it's going to have "nearly 275 seats, a wine store, a grab 'n' go coffee bar, an in-house bakery, giant wood-burning ovens, a colossal raw bar, rotisseries, a cooler to dry-age meats, and counter seating that overlooks the open kitchen, if all goes according to plan."
[Photo: Volt Restaurant]


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Woodward Table and Woodward Takeout Food

Location: Washington, DC
Owner: Jeffrey Buben
Projected Opening: November

These are two linked concepts in the Woodward Building from Jeffrey Buben of Vidalia and Bistro Bis. The restaurant, with Bistro Bis chef Joe Harran handling the menu, will focus on regional dishes like brisket, turtle soup, and lobster with spinach soufflé, while the takeout venue will open for breakfast and lunch before turning into a space fit for pop-ups and special events in the evenings.
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Bantam & Biddy

Location: Atlanta, GA
Chefs: Shaun Doty
Projected Opening: October

Shaun Doty, who closed his eponymous high-end restaurant in 2010 to focus on his burger spots Yeah!, will now work on Bantam & Biddy, a rotisserie chicken concept in the Ansley Mall. In an interview with Nation's Restaurant News, Doty described how it's "going to be rotisserie chicken with a lot of sides. It will basically be kind of like a [traditional southern] meat-and-three kind of experience. But we’re using local, free-range and pastured poultry, which is something I’m real passionate about, and seasonal sides, in a fast-casual setting."
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Florida Cookery

Location: Miami, FL
Chefs: Kris Wessel
Projected Opening: October

Kris Wessel, the man responsible for Red Light Little River, one of the more consistent, unpretentious, and downright funky restaurants in Miami, will now bring his talents to South Beach's forthcoming James Hotel. From what he's said in the press, it sounds like he'll be bringing his trademark approach to Florida Cookery, the new restaurant: "As a native Floridian, with roots spanning several generations, I want to establish Florida Cookery as an iconic culinary destination. My goal is to provide a hyper-regional experience that will allow me to utilize my knowledge of local product while also showcasing what a rich melting pot South Florida cooking represents." Early dish ideas include frog legs bathed in lime leaves, lychee-roasted quail, and mango pie.
[Photo credit]


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Michael Schwartz at The Raleigh

Location: Miami, FL
Chefs: Michael Schwartz
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

At some point this fall, Michael Schwartz, who in the past five years or so has emerged as the most renowned chef in Miami, will open up a restaurant at the relaunched Raleigh Hotel. According to the chef, they've really taken their time with this one, renovating the kitchen and fighting against "years of neglect" at the facility. Also: the restaurant won't be another outpost of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink, since Schwartz says that "it's an iconic property we want the hotel and its vibe to really dictate what it's going to be. The more time we spend at the property, we've found that we connect with it more. We're developing something organically."
[Photo credit]


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Sway

Location: Austin, Texas
Chef: René Ortiz
Owner: Jesse Herman
Projected Opening: Late summer/early fall

This is one Austin residents have been waiting for and salivating over for a while: the Thai restaurant from the La Condesa team. At first blush, it may seem a little weird that a guy named René Ortiz, who's earned acclaim cooking Mexico City-style food, is going Thai. But it makes a lot more sense when you hear that he and owner Jesse Herman have both spent time eating — and in Ortiz's case, cooking — lots of Austalian-style Thai food. Herman, in fact, thinks that Ortiz's "Thai food is better than his Mexican food." The space, which is located on South First, an area of town Herman feels has "a kind of older Austin feel, with some great neon, funky galleries, and cool vintage," will feature an open kitchen and communal tables. (Note: Paul Qui's flagship project, originally set for a November opening, will now probably see a 2013 debut).
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Connie & Ted's

Location: Los Angeles, California
Chef: Michael Cimarusti
Projected Opening: September or October

Celebrated chef Michael Cimarusti of Providence and Craig Nickoloff of Claim Jumper have taken over a West Hollywood diner and will be turning it into Connie & Ted's, a New England seafood shack serving steamer clams, clam cakes, lobster rolls, and all the food Cimarusti would eat when vacationing in Rhode Island. As of two months ago, construction was already underway.
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Bar Amá

Location: Los Angeles, California
Chef: Josef Centeno
Projected Opening: TBD

The chef Josef Centeno, formerly of the Lazy Ox Canteen and now of the white-hot Baco Mercat, is planning to replace the space once occupied by Urban Noodle in Downtown Los Angeles with Bar Amá. It's a tex-mex concept with tacos, enchiladas, and roasted meats on the menu. Centeno was born in San Antonio, Texas, so he wants to bring a bit of that to L.A. with this "bar with a heavy emphasis on food."
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Hakkasan

Location: San Francisco, CA
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

Hakkasan, the expensive, clubby Cantonese restaurant with outposts around the world that range from very good to very bad, will open in San Francisco's Financial District. To make sure things aren't a disaster, the company has brought in executive chef Ho Chee Boon, who won the London location its Michelin star.
[Photo credit]


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Duende

Location:Oakland, CA
Chef: Paul Canales
Projected Opening: Fall, TBD

This 4,000 square-foot Oakland restaurant from ex-Oliveto chef Paul Canales will feature live music and a retail component in addition to serving diners. As for the menu, Canales will put out his interpretations of Spanish food, taking plenty of liberties along the way. By the looks of some dishes, you can expect big flavors and colorful, hearty food.
[Photo credit]


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Shanik

Location: Seattle, WA
Owner: Meeru Dhalwala
Projected Opening: November

Meeru Dhalwala, who co-owns the acclaimed Indian restaurant Vij's in Vancouver with her husband Vikram Vij, is opening up her own project in the Amazonia neighborhood of Seattle. The restaurant, Shanik, is in its early stages, but Dhalwala maintains a November opening date. Shanik can loosely be described as Indian fusion, but Dhalwala says the restaurant, and its menu, will develop over time. One thing's almost certain: this means Seattle no longer lacks great Indian restaurants.
[Photo credit]


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The Whale Wins

Location: Seattle, WA
Owner: Renee Erickson
Projected Opening: September

Located in the mixed use retail and restaurant space The Fremont Collective, The Whale Wins is the third project from Renee Erickson, the chef best known for her second restaurant, oyster bar The Walrus and the Carpenter. At The Whale Wins, the focus will shift to a wood-burning oven, shareable plates, and plenty of vegetables and pickles. The restaurant will share the address with hit restaurant Joule, which recently moved from its original location in Wallingford.
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Two Vitaly Paley Concepts at Hotel Lucia

Location: Portland, OR
Owner: Vitaly Paley
Projected Opening: September

By the end of next month, the Hotel Lucia in downtown Portland will see two new restaurants thanks to one chef: Beard Award-winner Vitaly Paley of Paley's Place will open Imperial, a 110-seat fine dining restaurant and Portland Penny Diner, a more casual "Native American flatbread concept." Paley characterized the projects as "Pacific NW heritage cookery... What ties these two food concepts together is one basic principle of looking to our region's culinary past, interpreting it and adopting it for the present palate while looking at what the future of our region's cookery might be."
[Photo credit]


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