After some property record sleuthing by our own Paul Bowers, this morning we got Basil co-owner Henry Eang to confirm that he is, indeed, opening a new restaurant in Park Circle. 

The owner of five Thai restaurants (two in North Carolina, two in Charleston, and one in Columbia) tells us he’s adding Vietnamese to his dining portfolio with his latest spot slated to open at 1070 East Montague Ave. 

“Park Circle is very unique,” Eang says. “It’s growing rapidly, and I think locals will support our new concept.” Eang hopes to have the restaurant open before the end of the year.

But that’s not his only project in the works. As the Post & Courier‘s Warren Wise first reported, Eang and partner Palmer Quimby are also opening a new brewery at 1513 Meeting St. this year. 
“It’s going to be called Munkle,” Eang says. Come again? Quimby explains the name.

“My uncle is my best friend, and we were born only three months apart,” says Quimby, the former manager of Chai’s Lounge. Suffice to say, Quimby’s grandfather’s third wife had a baby, Rob Donehue, at the same time Quimby was born. The two boys became fast friends and stayed close growing up. Then, when they’d finished school, Donehue decided to move to Michigan and become an Episcopal monk.

Still with us? OK.

“The first year he was there, he found all this brewing equipment in the basement of the abbey,” says Quimby. “So he asked the abbot if he could start brewing beer and the abbot said absolutely.”

The monk got involved in home brewing clubs and used his free time — in between prayer — honing his craft. When he’d come to Charleston to visit Quimby, the two would brew together. 

“A month before his final vows, he decided to leave the monastery,” says Quimby. Now Donehue is finishing his seminary degree at Sewanee, which is all to say, the name of the brewery is in honor of him, the man who got Quimby interested in beer in the first place. “My uncle,” he says, “the monk — Munkle.” Need a beer to process that one? You’ll have to wait until this fall. That’s when Quimby hopes the new brewery will open joining possibly six other new area breweries now the works. 

But even with the continuing beer boom Quimby doesn’t think the city’s reached a tipping point yet.

“I think there’s plenty of room right now,” he says. “The good breweries will stick around. There’s no reason Charleston can’t support 15 or 16 breweries.”

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