Chef Anne Quatrano, who owns and operates the spots with her husband, Clifford Harrison, will move Bacchanalia and Star Provisions from their current location in the Westside Provisions District at 1198 Howell Mill Rd about a mile away to the soon-to-be-constructed Ellsworth Office Lofts at 1510 Ellsworth Industrial Boulevard by early 2017. The couple also owns and operates Floataway Cafe and W.H. Stiles Fish Camp at Ponce City Market, which will both continue service uninterrupted.
Little Bacch, which opened in 2015 with high marks in the courtyard-level space beneath Bacchanalia, will close early next year. Joe Schafer, who was named executive chef of Bacchanalia last year, will remain in his role after the move, and the entire staff from all three restaurants will stay on.
The take-away portion of Star Provisions, Star Provisions To-Go, will remain in its current space.Former AJC food writer John Kessler named Bacchanalia Atlanta’s only 4-star restaurant in 2014. The spot moved to Westside Provisions District in 1999, after several years in Buckhead.
Quatrano said several factors went into the decision to move, including the inability to reconfigure extra space to meet needs, rising rent and a downstairs area, currently home to Little Bacch, that wasn’t as accessible to customers. But the biggest factor, Quatrano said, is an issue plaguing many in-town restaurants: Parking.
“It’s sad, but that’s the reality,” Quatrano said. “People’s expectations are moving forward, and people have a lot of choices. We want to make the space as accessible, comfortable and interesting to guests as possible.” She said the Star Provisions team looked at several areas for relocation, including Buckhead and the new Atlanta Dairies development on Memorial Drive, but that the parking options provided at the Ellsworth space kept the businesses on the Westside.
She added the the move is “bittersweet” and that landlord Michael Phillips, who owns Westside Provisions District, “bent over backwards” to help accommodate the restaurants’ needs. But, Quatrano said, “it turned out to be time to go.”
Phillips said he has new tenants lined up for the space but is waiting to announce the next steps until after Quatrano’s move. While he acknowledges parking has been an inconvenience during construction at the District, he said the development “has a lot more parking than most places do.”
He added that he’s supportive of the move and that Quatrano “has been a great par of the community on the Westside.” Phillips also serves as Quatrano’s landlord at Floataway Cafe and W.H. Stiles Fish Camp.Quatrano’s plan is to open in the new location by March 2017 at the latest, and to likely close Little Bacch sometime in February. While Little Bacch, which Quatrano will close its physical location, she said many dishes will find their way onto Star Provisions’ menu in the new space. The menu will also feature plated dishes including wood-fired pizzas, roasted chicken and pastas, as well as sandwiches.
She said she’s also looking forward to growth in the beverage programs for both Star Provisions and Bacchanalia. The former will feature wine, beer and homemade sodas on tap, while the latter will see the addition of a 12-foot bar and a cocktail menu that she hopes will help the bar program “evolve and step it up a little.” Star Provisions will also see its retail space expanded.
The new building, Quatrano said, is a perfect fit for her future plans for the restaurants, while still retaining much of what customers like about the restaurants as they are now.
“We’re being given opportunity to do something a little more different, but a lot will stay the same,” she said.