City Centre

at Big Spring

Award-winning chef bringing hot new dishes to MidCity, CityCentre

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) – Fresh off the heels of the big announcement that Dave and Buster’s is coming to MidCity in Huntsville, developers are revealing some more good news, and this time it’s for all of the foodies out there.

A popular Atlanta chef is bringing his eateries to the Rocket City at both MidCity and CityCentre. The master-planned, mixed-use communities are currently under construction in Huntsville.

Chef Marc Taft, CEO of Southern Fried Hospitality

RCP Companies, the real estate firm behind MidCity and CityCentre, has partnered with award-winning chef Mark Taft out of Atlanta and his Southern Fried Hospitality company.

Taft has a few restaurants in Atlanta that he’s looking to bring to Huntsville, including his Brine Seafood Shack and FEED Fried Chicken.

RCP executives went to Atlanta to try some of his creations and they were very impressed.

Taft, who happens to be an Alabama native, will start with opening several concepts at The Camp, which is at MidCity and that’s going to feed into other projects at MidCity and CityCentre.

“We were looking for someone with modern concepts, fresh ideas, fresh menu items and good price points. We found Mark Taft and it was an easy fit. He has an extensive background in hospitality and we’re excited to have him on board and to see what he brings to MidCity and CityCentre,” Nadia Niakossary, RCP Companies Project Coordinator.

MidCity is currently the city’s largest mixed-use development and the nation’s fourth-largest commercial real estate project. CityCentre is a $100 million development in the city’s rejuvenated urban core.

“Marc Taft’s reputation along with his countless hospitality successes and what is undoubtedly a vast depth of industry knowledge, make this partnership a hands-down win-win opportunity for us as well as Huntsville, especially our growing foodie population,” said Max Grelier, cofounder of RCP Companies.

Most notably, the 2012/13 Zagat Survey recognized Southern Fried Hospitality’s metro Atlanta-based Chicken and the Egg as one of the “Top Five Best New Restaurants in Atlanta,” while AirTran’s GO magazine named the restaurant one of five culinary destinations for an upscale meal in Atlanta. Southern Fried is also known for Brine Seafood Shack at Avalon in Alpharetta, Georiga; FEED – Fried Chicken + Such at The Battery at SunTrust Park in Atlanta; along with CO-OP Community Table + Bar and Best Burger, two new concepts debuting next year at HALCYON in Forsyth County north of Atlanta.

“Brine and FEED are two brands that we plan to grow, The opportunity to deliver and manage restaurant concepts at these two developments is incredibly humbling,” said Taft. “Partnering with RCP will enable our company to embark on new ventures and create unique concepts while continuing the success of our established flavors that carry our southern heritage.”

Initial Southern Fried plans for MidCity include two to three chef-driven concepts for The Camp, a music and arts outdoor entertainment venue that launched last summer. Taft and his team will open and manage additional restaurants throughout the mixed-use development, including a food hall that will align with regional and national concepts already lined-up at MidCity.

At CityCentre, Southern Fried is expected to open several concepts adjacent to and inside the AC Hotel as well as a 12,000-square-foot artisanal culinary market, both of which will showcase Taft’s approach to southern delicacies.

“We intend to infuse the food hall craze with our unique approach to food and flavors of the South and introduce it to Huntsville’s culinary scene,” Taft stated.

Located on Williams Avenue between Monroe Street and Lowe Avenue, CityCentre is slated to include 40,000 square feet of retail and restaurant and 10,000 square feet of commercial space surrounded by 270 upscale apartment homes and a 125-key AC Hotel. MidCity is a $350 million redevelopment at the 140-acre site of the former Madison Square Mall with plans for 345,000 square feet of street-level retail and dining, 200,000 square feet of technical and creative office space, 500 hotel rooms and 900 residences. The development is situated at the intersection of two of Huntsville’s primary commercial corridors: University Drive and Research Park Boulevard.

The new AC Hotel & restaurant by Marriott at Big Spring at the old Holiday Inn site is scheduled to open in October.

Meanwhile, Dave & Buster’s will open in July 2019.