Retail: Farm-to-fork eatery coming to Wake Forest

jmgiglio@newsobserver.comJune 19, 2014 

Giorgios Bakatsias isn’t afraid to make a change.

And after more than four years of owning Girasole Trattoria, the longtime Triangle restaurateur is doing just that.

In mid-July, he’s turning the Italian restaurant into Farm Table, a farm-to-fork eatery that will have a changing menu based on specific ingredients instead of focusing on an ethnicity.

“A lot of people serve pasta, lasagna and pizza,” Bakatsias said. “I feel that (the new restaurant will) fulfill a niche that’s better for the community.”

Farm Table’s seasonal menu, which will be written on a giant blackboard, will change daily based on what local ingredients are available. The restaurant has its own large herb garden that it will use, and Bakatsias anticipates using seafood during the summer, as well as having menus that focus on lamb, beef, pork and duck.

“We will take the whole animal and do different features,” said Bakatsias, owner of Giorgios Hospitality Group that has restaurants in Durham, Chapel Hill and Wake Forest that include Parizade, Vin Rouge, Kipos, Village Burgers and Local 22.

The eatery will offer salads, appetizers, small plates, family-style dishes and entrees that include things like duck dumplings, short rib ravioli and macaroni and cheese with Gruyère and house-cured bacon.

Farm Table’s full bar will carry beer from local breweries.

Meats and produce will also be local, coming from farms such as HRB Farm in Pinetops, Heritage Farms in Seven Springs, Pura Vida Farm in Bahama, and Rare Earth Farms and Clover C Farms in Bunn.

The restaurant’s prices will range from about $5 to about $22, depending on seafood costs, but most dishes will be from $10 to $18, while small plates will run from about $5 to about $8, Bakatsias said.

The 4,000-square-foot restaurant, which will seat about 80 people inside and 55 on an outdoor patio that features the herb garden and a fireplace, will close temporarily during the transition from Girasole to Farm Table.

And Bakatsias said he’s ready for that change.

“Why do the time and spend the energy and money to run it like it is?” Bakatsias said. “Always ask yourself ‘How can I improve? How can I do better?’ It’s good that things are changing and improving.”

Farm Table will be at 960 Gateway Commons Circle in Wake Forest, next to Gatehouse Tavern.

Downtown Raleigh men’s clothing retailer Lumina Clothing is moving its flagship store to Person Street Plaza.

The new 1,200-square-foot shop will be almost twice the size as the current 700-square-foot space on Martin Street. And that extra room will allow owner Barton Strawn to expand his products and services.

“We want to continue to grow and provide better services to Raleigh,” Strawn said. “And that space will allow us to do that.”

Strawn said the new store will have a larger range of Lumina products and have products and services that he’s wanted to add for a while, such as a styling program and Made To Measure shirts and pants.

He also plans to offer products, including shoes, grooming items, bags, accessories and outerwear, from retailers such as Archival Clothing, Rancor, Filson, Walk Over and Red Wing.

Strawn hopes he won’t have to temporarily close the shop during the relocation, which is expected to take place in September or October. The new store requires construction work before it can open; however, Strawn is glad for the opportunity to create something that fits his expanding needs.

“We hope to open by October. If we can be open by September, that would be fantastic,” Strawn said. “We’re willing to make that trade-off so it will be exactly how we want it and how we need it.”

Lumina Clothing’s exact street number has yet to be determined, but the store will be on Franklin Street, next to Yellow Dog Bread Co.

Commercial lighting supply store Victory Lights has opened a retail space in Garner. The company specializes in LED retrofit lighting, lamp recycling and commercial lighting supplies.

Victory Lights is at 595 Old Drug Store Road, Suite 101.

Skin Sense has opened a Himalayan Salt Cave in its North Raleigh day spa.

The cave contains minerals such as iron, magnesium, copper, calcium and iodine, and claims to help with conditions such as asthma, allergies, eczema and acne, along with helping to reduce fatigue and stress. The room’s air doesn’t have allergens, dust or pollutants.

The spa offers 45-minute salt cave sessions, which are $35 for adults and $20 for children.

Skin Sense is at 6801 Falls of Neuse Road.

American Fireworks, a pop-up fireworks shop that carries items such as sparklers, hand-held fireworks, torches, color-changing fire and party poppers has opened in Durham.

The store will operate through July 5, and is at Suite 516 in Northgate Mall, across from the food court.

Giglio: 919-829-4649 or; Twitter: @shoptalk_nando

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