Chef Ford Fry, owner of JCT. Kitchen & Bar, No. 246 and The Optimist and Oyster Bar at The Optimist in Atlanta plans to open King + Duke, a new colonial American focused restaurant in March 2013. Located at 3060 Peachtree Road in One Buckhead Plaza which formerly housed Nava, the restaurant will feature a large open hearth for early American cooking techniques and use locally sourced products. Joseph Schafer, currently the chef de cuisine at JCT. Kitchen & Bar, will serve as executive chef.
Fry’s name for the restaurant refers to two characters from Mark Twain’s novel Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. In the novel, the King and the Duke are two cunning grifters who deceive local townspeople. The name King + Duke is Fry’s salute to a classic piece of American literature and also reflects his attempt to pull off a lighthearted deception of his own. Fry hopes diners who might perceive the restaurant as formal due to its name and location will be pleasantly surprised to discover that the atmosphere is more fun than serious.
“I’m really excited about bringing a brand new look to the corner of Peachtree Street and West Paces Ferry,” said Fry.“King + Duke will be a classic American tavern, similar to an early American public house. Nava was an amazing restaurant and I can only hope to fill the big shoes left by the beloved Buckhead institution.”
Although the menu is still in the planning phases, the emphasis will be on wood roasted meat, fish and fowl. For lunch service, these items will be adapted for salads, sandwiches and lighter entree plates.
Plans from the interior design team at Meyer Davis Studio Inc. feature a comfortable space where guests will immediately feel at home. The restaurant will have a heavily planted exterior garden leading to the main dining room. The open kitchen design allows diners an unobstructed view of the chef and kitchen staff as they prepare dishes.
The restaurant will also have a private dining room – called The Drawing Room – as a nod to the rooms where men used to retire after dinner to smoke cigars and drink brandy during colonial times. This space will be furnished with old oil paintings and plush seating. the comfort and details of one’s home within a public setting.