The downtown restaurant spaces formerly occupied by McCrady’s and Minero will soon be home to restaurant concepts with Atlanta roots, revived by a restaurateur who’s spun up a handful of eateries in Charlotte and Charleston.
Martin Sprock, co-founder of the mega-chain of Moe’s Southwest Grill franchises, purchased 155 East Bay St. and 2 Unity Alley for $3.3 million, according to a press release from Charleston Commercial, which handled the sale.
Sprock plans to bring two Atlanta spots — Clarence Foster’s Cookery & Saloon and Chameleon Club — to the 12,000-square-foot space slated to open early 2022. Clarence Foster’s, a former Buckhead-area restaurant that will soon celebrate its 50th anniversary, will take over the main level of the building. Chameleon Club, initially a music venue also in the Buckhead area, will take over the historic upstairs “long room” last home to Minero.
“The space where George Washington dined will welcome a slightly older crowd for cocktails, bites and music,” the press release read, talking about Chameleon Club.
Downstairs, where chef Sean Brock and others experimented through molecular gastronomy’s heyday on McCrady’s tasting menus, Clarence Foster’s hopes to “fill a void … with incredible food at an affordable price point.”
Both spaces were formerly operated by Neighborhood Dining Group, which still runs several Husk locations, along with Delaney Oyster House on Calhoun Street. The group shuttered the more-casual McCrady’s Tavern in July 2019. A year later, Minero and McCrady’s — which had shifted to a smaller space — closed as well.
Sprock plans to keep the familiar interior fundamentally the same with some updates and new artwork to set the mood.
“It will be your go-to place once or twice a week,” Sprock said. “Our tagline is ‘Don’t you people have homes!’”
Sprock has a few Charlotte restaurants under his belt, including locations of Flying Biscuit Cafe and Kid Cashew, both of which now also have Mount Pleasant locations. Ruru’s Tacos & Tequila nearby at 159 East Bay St., is also a Sprock import from the Queen City.