Chef Armstrong and Peers to Open Space on S. Washington St.
Restaurateur Cathal Armstrong to open Society Fair with help from butcher, baker and others
Chef and co-owner of Old Town Alexandria's Restaurant Eve plans to open a food market hosting a bakery, butcher and wine bar on South Washington Street.
Chef Cathal Armstrong, a native Dubliner, and his wife Meshelle Armstrong, have taken out a lease at 277 S. Washington to open Society Fair.
The 7,000-square-foot venue will be a European-style food market, according to a spokeswoman for the project.
The Armstrongs will work on the initiative with baker Nathan Hatfield, who has been with Restaurant Eve since it opened, and butcher Dan Fisher, who has worked with the chef for 10 years.
"This is how we as a company operate - groom the best, nuture their creativity, teach them the business and then give them a piece of the pie," said Cathal Armstrong.
John Wabeck, a sommelier and former chef, will run the wine business of the new venue. Robb Shinn from San Francisco's Slanted Door will operate the retail portion.
There will also be a "studio kitchen" serving a prix fixe three-course dinner on Fridays and Saturdays at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. In a nod to the Armstrongs' embrace of technology in the kitchen, dinner preparations will be filmed and shown in the market for shoppers to view.
The market area will be open from 7 a.m. to midnight.