Budd Dairy Announces Two More Food Hall Partners
Budd Dairy Food Hall, Cameron Mitchell Restaurants’ upcoming Italian Village venue, announced two new culinary partners on Tuesday. Modern Southern Table, originally launched in Zanesville, and Alphabetical Comfort Kitchen, a local food truck and catering company, will join Darista and Borgata at the food hall when it opens later this year.
Modern Southern Table, owned and operated by Sadaya “Daisy” Lewis, started in the food court of Colony Square Mall in Zanesville. They won the location as part of the Food Network show, “Food Court Wars,” in March of 2014, but Lewis says she’s ready to be more centrally located.
Lewis began cooking early in her childhood, prompted by her first taste of her grandma’s gumbo, which comes loaded with crab and crawfish.
“I was 6 years old, and that changed my life forever. That dish is what made me go into food,” Lewis said at a press gathering at Budd Dairy on Tuesday. “I started cooking at 9 years old, I’ve been cooking ever since. I went into the finance world like, ‘Hey, this is an option,’ but food was calling me the whole time, so this is where I am.”
Modern Southern Table specialized in southern cuisine from the low country style of South Carolina to Louisiana cajun and creole, and everything in between. Known primarily for their fried chicken and gumbo, the restaurant will offer a full array of southern entrees, including gullah crab rice and garlic shrimp, New Orleans Po’Boys, low country shrimp and grits, Mississippi fried catfish, and Geechee red rice and fish. They’ll also have sides like candied yams, collard greens with smoked turkey, mac and cheese, Carolina coleslaw and red rice.
Alphabetical Comfort Kitchen is owned by Jordan Lamatrice, and serves up a diverse menu of sandwiches, salads, soups and sides.
The menu offers five entrees: Hawaiian High Five, with slow roasted pork, grilled pineapple bacon slaw and chipotle barbecue sauce; the Balboa, with steak, peppers, mushrooms, onions and a three-cheese blend; One Buff Chicken, with buffalo chicken, celery, red onions, ranch drizzle and feta; the Beer Gut Dawg, a hotdog loaded with their award-winning Beer Gut Chili, cheddar cheese and fried onion straws; and the Faux Philly, with sautéed mushrooms, red peppers and onions, black bean hummus, spinach and feta.
From there, guests choose how they’d like the entree presented, on a bun, in a salad, or over fries. Then there’s the option to make it a meal with a cup or bowl of soup, and a choice of fried Brussels sprouts, french fries or Beer Gut Fries (with chili, cheese, and sour cream) for a side.
Lamatrice says they’ve established a good clientele by catering corporate lunches and events, but their slot at Budd Dairy Food Hall will allow them to reach an entirely new audience.
“This is a really good stepping stone for a standalone. When you have a standalone, you have to be your only draw,” he says. “People unfamiliar with your brand or who you are, it’s a good way to introduce them to who you are.”
Modern Southern Kitchen and Alphabetical Comfort Kitchen are the two latest concepts to be announced by Budd Dairy. Darista, an Israeli hummusiya by Darista Dips owner Dara Schwartz, and Borgata Pizza Café, specializing in New York-style pizza and from-scratch Italian dishes, were announced in January. CMR VP of Development Steve Weiss says candidates went through a “shark tank” style competition for a spot at Budd Dairy. The company narrowed down their 110 applicants to 15 or 16, then invited them in to showcase their food and make their case to CMR’s leadership team. Budd Dairy will eventually have eight culinary partners.
The building itself will offer a number of different kinds of spaces for guests, including a lounge area just inside the entrance, a large bar with a stage in the main vendor room, a beer garden, an upstairs bar, and a “most seasons” rooftop patio. CMR has partnered with Lykens Companies to build out the space.
“The buzz this has gotten, not just amongst the people in the neighborhood but amongst my peers, amongst other people coming in from out town,” says Kevin Lykens, owner of Lykens Companies. “I think this is going to be kind of a show piece for the city of Columbus.”
Still deep into construction, and working to preserve the building’s historical aspects, an opening is not expected until late this year.