Two of the five food and beverage components of the Poe West redevelopment project, 556 Perry Ave., are on track to open mid-March.
LaRue Fine Chocolate and Unlocked Coffee Roasters, which sit side by side at units 115 and 116, will likely open within days of each other as both are at the final stages of arranging furniture and making last-minute caulk and paint touch-ups.
The 60,000-square-foot mixed-use development in Village of West Greenville will be anchored by Greenville Technical College Center for Culinary and Hospitality Innovation and include the second locations for both Carolina Bauernhaus and Six & Twenty
Distillery. All are expected to open later this spring.
Additional non-hospitality-related tenants include The Junkyard, a group-fitness training center owned by former Clemson University standout linebacker Ben Boulware and former Newberry College defensive back Marcus Brown, and 98 Ventures, a Greenville-based executive management services company.
These are the first brick-and-mortar locations for both LaRue owner Elizabeth McDaniel and Unlocked owners Andres Camargo and Rocío Salazar.
Though neighboring units that share common space through the rear exits, their designs are individual. LaRue’s space is a deep chocolate with brushed brass fixtures, concrete bar and a white feature wall on which a colorful mural of a cacao pod is painted. By contrast, Unlocked is white with navy accents and a curved L-shaped bar designed to allow guests to view the entire pour-over process.
LaRue’s space includes a kitchen nearly five times the size of McDaniel’s current workspace. The front counter will have retail chocolates available. The remainder of the restaurant includes bar, banquette and soft seating for 40 guests to enjoy wine, beer and
cocktails paired with chocolates and other desserts.
McDaniel, a graduate of the Ecole Chocolat who holds a professional chocolatier certificate with honors, says the larger workspace will allow her to increase her production significantly and host chocolate-making classes.
The Unlocked cafe with seating for 50 is part roastery, as well. Camargo’s and Salazar’s joint goal for the company is to support not only the international coffee farms from which they source, but also the local Hispanic baking community through featuring traditional pastries popular in Latin America. The menu will also include toasts, smoothies, bowls and other breakfast items.
“We want to support local businesses and make more community so people can find out all of the diversity that is available in Greenville,” Salazar says.