Craft Izakaya partner and general manager Richard Tang will open a Korean barbecue restaurant in the Inman Quarter mixed-use this fall. Tang doesn't have a name for his new venture yet, but he hopes to open in October.
Update, August 27: The restaurant will be called Char Korean Bar & Grill.
"We're going to bring some of the traditional stuff like bo ssam, sea snail, spicy noodles — we're going to use soba noodles rather than the vermicelli," Tang said in a phone conversation with Eater Atlanta. "We're going to do a kimchi-pork belly fried rice. We're going to have some tartare on the menu, spicy sea snail salad over soba noodles, some sweet potato tempura, stuff like that."
The restaurant will include a double-sided bar that offers service inside and out on the patio. The goal for the beverage program is to offer craft cocktails without being too pretentious.
"The whole Korean concept is touch, feel, and being part of an environment, you know?You're cooking at your table, you're grilling at your table, and basically you're part of the whole experience," Tang said. "So I want the beverage experience to be the same. I want it to hit that fifth dimension, that sixth dimension, where not only do you taste, not only do you see, not only do you smell, but you also hear, you can touch. So basically the whole experience is — I'm not saying we're going to go molecular, but we're going to go outside the box a little bit.
"We're going to go a little crazy, but still keep it in the realm of being able to get a cocktail within two to three minutes, rather than the ridiculous 15-minute programs that are out in Decatur or whatever. We're going to have an intelligent bar, but we're going to have an efficient, intelligent bar. Same thing over at Craft [Izakaya]. We did a craft bar, but you're not waiting 15 minutes or 20 minutes for a cocktail."
Aside from two financial investors, Tang is the main partner in the project. Craft Izakaya chef/partner Jey Oh is consulting on the menu, but Tang plans to hire a new chef/kitchen manager and a bar manager.
Tang wants his new eatery to have a neighborhood feel.
"We do want to be a neighborhood place," Tang said. "Why open up something in Inman Park and then try to cater to other people. You let the neighborhood dictate what you are rather than trying to dictate which neighborhood you want to show up."