Fresh off the openings of Superica in February, Marcel in July and Bar Margot in September, Atlanta restaurant kingpin Ford Fry is nearly done with another project. BeetleCat, Fry's sister restaurant to Westside's The Optimist, is on track to begin service in Inman Park's Inman Quarter development soon — likely next month — and Rocket Farm Restaurants has some more details to share. The seafood eatery will take the form of a "shore-style, casual cocktail lounge with a coastal '70s and '80s vibe."
BeetleCat will be more casual than The Optimist, and it sounds like it won't be short on the Wes Anderson-esque whimsy Fry has brought to his recent restaurants. A large oyster bar on the top floor surrounds a wood oven, and the lower level is inspired by "an early 1970s den." Patios on both levels offer al fresco dining.
Andrew Isabella, a longtime chef under the Rocket Farm umbrella, is in charge of the kitchen. Fry says the oyster bar will always feature "a minimum of 12 varieties of oysters from all coasts and water depths," and the main menu will suggest diners to share simple plates such as wood-roasted crab, octopus, and clams. Rocket Farms director of pastry Chrysta Poulos's desserts include coconut cream cake with chile-lime peanuts and roasted pineapple with hot buttered rum sauce and star anise ice cream. At the bar, beverage director Lara Creasy will serve a rotating menu of housemade punches, tiki drinks, and "updated versions of '80s oceanfront bar classics."
Once it's in business, BeetleCat, located at 280 Elizabeth Street, will be open Monday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Sunday from 3 p.m. 10 p.m. Late-night dining will be offered Friday and Saturday from 11 p.m. until 2 a.m.