While news leaked out Friday about one Charlotte restaurant group planning to join Tompkins Hall, the massive food and retail complex in a restored textile mill near NoDa, a lot more news is expected in the next few weeks.
Tara Murphy of 360 Media in Atlanta, the marketing group working with the developer, White Point Partners, says she expects to announce several more vendors for the 22,000-square-foot food hall within the next couple of weeks. Also to come: Up to three restaurants that will be separate from the vendors in the food hall.
On Friday, the developers confirmed that Bao + Broth, an Asian-inspired stand by Bruce Moffett and Larry Schreiber, will be one of the stalls, with steamed buns similar to the ones at Good Food on Montford, where Schreiber is the chef.
Bao + Broth joins a rotisserie chicken stand by the owners of Aix En Provence and Undercurrent Coffee that already have been announced. When finished, the food hall will hold a number of stalls, including known Charlotte food producers and other vendors from elsewhere in North Carolina and along the East Coast. The developers plan to announce 15 more food hall vendors in addition to the three already announced, along with a bar for that space, and seven more spaces that will be restaurants, retail or other entertainment venues.
"There's a lot going on," Murphy said. Contracts are still being worked out with more vendors.
Developer Jay Levell of White Point Partners gave The Observer a tour of the building in progress last week and said that the food hall will be similar to Krog Street Market in Atlanta, which has drawn a following for food including chef Todd Richards' popular fried chicken restaurant, Richards' Southern Fried, and Ford Fry's Superica, a location of which recently opened in Charlotte's South End.
While Fonta Flora Brewing has already announced a tasting room in one of the largest spaces in the building, there's still bigger food news expected. One end of the brick complex has spaces that can accommodate anywhere from one to three restaurants that will be separate from the food hall.
Murphy says tenants for those spaces are still in negotiations.
A tour through the space shows that the construction is well underway, with the original heart pine floors being polished and restored. As a historic building, the complex will include the original brick exterior (it won't be painted, as the original artist's rendering depicted). A modern addition on one end will hold offices for Duke Energy, while the older sections of the building, which date to the 19th century, will be focused on the food hall, restaurants and retail space.
In the middle, between two wings of the original mill, there will be a multi-level outdoor space with tables and a partial cover allowing a view of the uptown skyline. Along the back, where the new Lynx Blue Line Extension tracks swoop overhead, there will be more outdoor seating for the restaurants and the original smokestack that once powered the building.
The restoration of the building is expected to be finished in October, and then tenants will have several months to complete their spaces inside, with a target opening date in the first quarter of 2019.