BayHaven Restaurant Group has a new culinary concept in the pipeline for midtown Charlotte. Founders Chef Gregory and Subrina Collier have signed a deal to open 3rd & Fernwood at the Metropolitan mixed-use development.
The couple expects to invest roughly $500,000 to revamp the 5,200-square-foot space — formerly home to Hickory Tavern. The restaurant will have 100 seats, with 20 at the bar and 20 outside. Plans also call for a speakeasy — known as 3rd — with seating for 18 and a separate entrance.
It is slated to open before Thanksgiving. Demolition is underway. Spencer Architect has been tapped for the project.
“We got a really good opportunity to take a second-generation space and turn it into something we are very passionate about,” says Greg Collier.
Expect that restaurant to be the most approachable venture by BayHaven to date, he adds. The restaurant group already operates Leah & Louise at Camp North End and Uptown Yolk in South End. It also founded the BayHaven Food & Wine Festival, an annual celebration of Black foodways. The event aims to raise awareness of Black culinary experts and create opportunities for newcomers in the hospitality industry.
3rd & Fernwood will offer casual dining. The concept will tap into foodways of African diaspora, while connecting with the American South.
The speakeasy will boast a more modern, small-plates menu.
“We will take on a fresh but elevated perspective that acknowledges the substantial influence of the South and its culinary traditions, specifically the renowned ‘meat and three’ meals,” Greg Collier says.
The multiple-time James Beard nominee has partnered with Chef Cleophus Hethington, a fellow nominee from Asheville’s Benne on Eagle. Hethington has been tapped as executive chef. His culinary resume includes time at top restaurants in Miami, New York, Atlanta, Italy and Brazil.
As Chef de Cuisine at Zak the Baker in Miami, Hethington helped rack up accolades including being featured in the Michelin Guide and achieving the esteemed Bib Gourmand rating. Zak the Baker was also a finalist for the James Beard Foundation’s Best Bakery award in 2023.
Collier and Hethington will collaborate on the menu for 3rd & Fernwood. Expect it to draw from the influences of Brazil, the Caribbean and Africa. Items in development include a fried chicken thigh sandwich, served with hot sauce caramel, house-made pickles and herb mayonnaise on a brioche bun; grilled catfish with roasted okra gravy; and sides such as creamed collard greens with fennel and smoked tomato jam, three cheese mac, braised turnip, grilled pumpkin/sweet potato and hambone grits, among other options.
Initially, 3rd & Fernwood will be open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with plans to eventually extend to 8 p.m.
BayHaven previously announced plans to open 4 new concept restaurants in Charlotte’s Camp North End, but made the decision in February 2023 to table those expansion plans.