Panera Sneak Peek

EatingOxford.com was invited to a practice party today at the new Panera on Jackson Avenue, which is scheduled to open next Wednesday, September 17.

I knew you’d want a peek into what the new restaurant looks like, so of course I snapped some photos for you….

Some of the things that stood out to me today were the array of pastries and breads available; flavored teas at the soda station; the option to get my soup in a sourdough bread bowl; and interesting pastas such as butternut squash ravioli and pesto sacchettini.

Enjoy the pics!

–Liz

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turkey bravo sandwich with broccoli cheese

Turkey bravo sandwich and broccoli cheese soup

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mediterranean veggie

Mediterranean Veggie sandwich

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The Story Behind the Newk’s Teal Cup

Newks cupIf you’ve been to Newk’s lately, you’ve received a teal cup in place of the standard issue black one, and you may have wondered about the switch.

At more than 70 Newk’s locations, the signature black cup has been replaced by a teal cup in recognition of Ovarian Cancer Awareness this September thanks to the efforts of Lori Newcomb.

Lori, the wife of Newk’s Eatery co-founder and CEO Chris Newcomb, was diagnosed with stage IIIC ovarian cancer in early 2013, and in response, decided to launch a Newk’s Cares campaign to raise awareness about the disease.

By educating women and their loved ones about early warning signs of the disease, promoting research for a cure, and sharing her story, Lori hopes to be a source of strength, inspiration and hope in the fight against ovarian cancer (in the U.S., ovarian cancer causes more deaths than all other gynecological cancers combined and is the 5th leading cause of cancer death in women).

lori at newks

Lori Newcomb

Throughout the Newk’s Cares campaign, Newk’s will provide educational information on ovarian cancer signs and symptoms at each restaurant and the story of Lori’s personal journey will also be available to guests in restaurants, as well as on the Newk’s Cares website. Newk’s will donate a minimum of $15,000 to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund as part of its charitable initiative. And on September 25, Lori and Newk’s Cares will raise funds for OCRF through a 5-hour Ovarian Cycle® indoor cycle event in Jackson, Mississippi, where Newk’s is headquartered. The fundraising goal for this event is $50,000.

The 5-hour Ovarian Cycle® fundraising event will be held at the Country Club of Jackson on Thursday, September 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will raise much-needed money for ovarian cancer research. Information about event registration and guidelines is available at ovariancycle.kintera.org/JACKSON2014. More information about Ovarian Cycle events can be found on the OCRF website.

For more information about ovarian cancer and to hear Lori’s story in her own words, visit Newk’s Cares.

 

Opening Soon: England Dan’s Opens Next Weekend

England Dan’s will open next weekend.

I interviewed co-owner and chef Mike Salts for my biweekly column in the Oxford Citizen and have included the story below for those who missed yesterday’s issue.

–Liz

SAMSUNGI sat down with Mike Salts last week, the co-owner and chef at England Dan’s Char-Steaks & Grill, opening next weekend at 2580 West Jackson Avenue, Suite 30, to find out what the former owner of Fred Red’s Steaks (Tupelo) had planned for Oxford.

In addition to an extensive menu covering traditional southern favorites such as whole catfish; pork chops; meat loaf; deep-fried oysters; fried chicken; and chicken livers, Salts and his son Pat-Rue will also offer a full lineup of chargrilled Certified Hereford steaks, breakfast starting every morning at 5:30 a.m., weekday plate lunches, and a salad bar.

“I just want to serve quality food at good prices,” says Salts, who named the restaurant after his son England-Dan, who the family lost in a swimming accident in 2012. “England-Dan used to own a steakhouse in Starkville, and now his brother Pat-Rue and I are carrying it on.”

Salts says that he’s looking forward to serving the type of food he was raised on and still enjoys today. “You might look at a few of the food combinations and wonder if they will work, but trust me, it’s good,” says Salts. “We’ve also recruited some dynamite local cooks and servers who we’re excited to have on board.”

England Dan’s will offer BYOB service and be open Mondays through Saturdays, 5:30 a.m. until the last person leaves. If you stay late enough, Salts might even turn on the disco ball he recently had installed.

 

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Panera to Showcase Local Artists

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Artwork: Benny Melton

I ran into local artist Benny Melton yesterday at High Point Coffee who passed along some exciting news.

The new Panera Bread opening on Jackson Avenue will be featuring Melton’s artwork alongside several other Oxford artists in the future.

It’s always great to hear about a new restaurant integrating itself into the community this way, and I’m looking forward to checking out the gallery of artwork when Panera opens its doors.

–Liz

 

Oxford’s New Restaurants

new restaurantsSummertime in Oxford means hot weather and lots of new restaurants! Get the latest scoop with this quick round up….

New Openings

Starbucks is now open at 1804 Jackson Avenue.

The Wine Bar at 401 S. Lamar is open for business.

Sweet T’s Bakery opened in the Papa John’s shopping center on Jackson Avenue

Coming Soon

Krystal is slated to be added to the Exxon on Hwy 6

Wingstop is getting close to completion next door to Rice & Spice on Jackson Avenue

Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken is nearing completion at 306 S. Lamar

England Dan’s is under construction in the former location of Bistro Burger

Panera is scheduled to open in September on Jackson Avenue

TriBecca Allie Cafe in Sardis is working on opening a coffee/dessert shop next door to the pizzeria

Ron Shapiro has plans to reopen his Hoka/Main Squeeze concept as Hoka, Also, in the former Renasant Bank just off the Square

Mesquite Chop House has been approved for buildout at 1001 E. Jackson Avenue

Nashville-based burger restaurant The Slider House has its eyes on an Oxford location

Ming’s Kitchen is opening next door to England Dan’s in the Walmart shopping center on Jackson Avenue.

The Growler, a craft beer bar serving steamed subs will open soon next to High Point Coffee on the Square.

An outpost of Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina and Boneheads (grilled fish/piri piri chicken) are planned for the new Highland Court project being constructed in the old Cannon Motors location on Jackson Avenue.

 

Next Eating Oxford Institute: Family Cooking Night

The next Eating Oxford Institute class on Tuesday, August 12, invites families (max 4 people) to create a family supper with the help of Sunny Young of Good Food for Oxford Schools. Get all of the details here, and pre-order tickets early as seating is limited to 10 families.

 

Krystal Coming to Oxford

krystal logoIt was just a rumor a couple of years ago. Now the Krystal rumor has been confirmed.

After getting a tip from Eating Oxford fan Jerrod Ham on Twitter, we traced the info back to Exxon on Highway 6 to confirm that the station got the OK on July 18 to add a Krystal burger restaurant to the gas station.

No completion date has been released as of yet, but you can follow the progress on the Oxford Exxon Twitter page here.

 

 

Oxford’s 11 Best Patios (Oxford Citizen column from July 10)

Member content. Click HERE to become a member for just $3.99/month.

Cellar Undergoes Remodel

cellarHave you been by the Cellar recently? For those wondering, it’s the lower-level bar of The Levee, which was, for a short time, called McCarthy’s Irish Pub, and then changed back to the Cellar.

Turns out the bar is currently undergoing a remodel, so we checked in with executive partner/co-founder/manager Seth Klein for the inside scoop.

EatingOxford.com: How long has The Cellar been open and why have you decided to remodel?

Seth: The bar itself has been around since 2007, but in early 2012 the decision was made to venture away from the Cellar theme and it was turned into McCarthy’s Irish Pub. After much deliberation, we decided that McCarthy’s was not a good fit and we wanted to bring the Cellar back due to the success it had previously. Therefore, we decided it would be best to give the bar a whole new look and feel instead of just changing the name.

EatingOxford.com: What changes will be made during the remodel?

Seth: The entire bar is undergoing a remodel. We are adding new flooring and seating as well as making multiple changes throughout, which will help bring the feel of an upscale martini lounge to the historic Oxford square.

EatingOxford.com: How long will the remodel take?

Seth: About one month. The remodel is scheduled for completion in early to mid-August 2014.

EatingOxford.com: Will The Levee be affected at all?

Seth: The Levee will not be affected. The Cellar is closed until the remodel is complete, but the Levee is open for business as usual.

EatingOxford.com: Will the menus at the Cellar change after the remodel?

Seth: Yes. The overall goal is to focus on great martinis and great cocktails. Our martini menu and specialty drink menu will offer a wide variety of new and exciting beverages to enjoy. We plan to use fresh juices and fruits as well for many of the drinks we are adding to our menu. We also have plans to add new beers, some of which will be catered to customers trying to live a little healthier. We also plan to add a bunch of great items to our food menu.

 

New Restaurant Replaces Bistro Burger

england dans smallHave you spotted the new sign on the now closed Bistro Burger at 2580 West Jackson Avenue, Suite 30?

Looks like a restaurant called England Dan’s Char-Steaks & Grill is planning to open in the spot.

From what we saw today, there’s a few weeks to go before opening, and we’ve been unable to locate contact information for the new owner, who we believe is named Mike Salts.

If you have any information, contact us at liz@eatingoxford.com and we’ll help spread the word.

 

Class Wrap-Up: Juicing for Health and Energy

IMG_5027Our first class in the Eating Oxford Institute series was held Wednesday night at The Powerhouse.

Attendees learned the benefits and techniques of juicing from Melody Sharp, owner of Living Foods (formerly Local Flavor).IMG_5096

Melody showed the difference between styles of juicers, how to get the most bang for your buck out of fruits and vegetables, tips for any fruits that need to be peeled/cored before juicing, and more.

The class sampled fruit and vegetable juices, participated in questions and answers, and all departed with a full-size juice, recipe card and coupon.

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We loved having Melody share her knowledge at a fun evening of culinary learning!

Check out the great write-up by LaReeca Rucker in today’s Oxford Eagle, too!

Don’t miss next month’s class, Southern Foods Done Light, taught by Tim Woodard on July 15 at the Activity Center. Details Here.

 

***Eating Oxford Institute is a collaboration between EatingOxford.com, the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council, and the Oxford Park Commission.

(Thank you to Giana Leone IMG_5021of the Daily Mississippian for sharing her photos from the event.)

Oxford Eagle’s Best of Oxford 2014: EatingOxford.com Wins Again!

best of oxford eagleThe Best of Oxford 2014 was released today in The Oxford Eagle.

Thank you to everyone who helped EatingOxford.com win…

Best Oxford-Themed Website for the FOURTH year in in a row!

Check out all of the winners, including your favorite restaurants, doctors, teachers, banks and more. Accessible online or in today’s paper.

 

 

 

Coming Soon: Mesquite Chop House

mesquite chopThe Courthouse Square Historic Preservation Commission recently approved an application to open a Mesquite Chop House at 1001 E. Jackson Avenue.

The application, submitted by Blake Tartt III, who is currently completing construction of a Starbucks on W. Jackson Avenue, would involve adding a one-story addition to the rear of the building as well as various exterior modifications for accessibility and outdoor seating. View the full plans/application here.

According to historical records, the building once served as office space for lawyer and author John Grisham during the 1980s and early 1990s.

Mesquite Chop House is a steak and seafood restaurant with locations in Memphis, Germantown, and Southaven. They are part of the River City Management Group of restaurants, which also includes Spindini, Rum Boogie Cafe, and others.

Juicing Class: June 18

juicingEating Oxford Institute Kicks Off This Month!

EatingOxford.com, in partnership with the Yoknapatawpha Arts Council and Oxford Park Commission is offering monthly food-centric classes starting in June.

The first class, Juicing for Health and Energy, with Melody Sharp, owner of Oxford-based Living Foods (formerly Local Flavor), will be held Wednesday, June 18 at The Powerhouse from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $25/pp

This class will begin with a short primer on the benefits of juicing fruits and vegetables, as Melody illustrates how juicing can increase energy and improve overall health and mood. Attendees will sample juices as Melody reveals her top tips for combining fruits and vegetables to create tasty combinations. All ticket holders will leave the class with a full-size juice and a coupon toward another juice at Living Foods.

Seating is limited to 40 people. Secure your tickets here.

EatingOxford.com Members receive a $5 discount on all classes. Email liz@eatingoxford.com for more details.

Contact liz@eatingoxford.com with any questions.

 

Coming Soon: Wingstop

wing stop picA sign for an upcoming Wingstop restaurant recently went up on the Kiamie’s Coin Laundry at 1518 Jackson Avenue (big thanks to Antonio Barragan, owner of Bim Bam Burgers for letting us know, and providing the photo!).

Construction will likely take a few months, as the franchisee is also opening locations in Tupelo and Starkville, with Oxford being the final one scheduled for completion.

The Dallas-based Wingstop restaurant chain was started in 1994 and now has more than 600 locations offering regular and boneless wings with a choice of 10 flavors and a number of sides. See the Wingstop website for more information and a complete menu.

 

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New Thai Restaurant Now Open

pick thai urbanspoon

Photo: Urbanspoon

Pick Thai has opened in the former location of Bangkok Thai at 1101 Frontage Road inside the Days Inn.

pick thai 2 urbanspoon

Photo: Urbanspoon

While efforts to contact the owners have been unsuccessful, there’s an Urbanspoon page that’s been set up, showing a menu, which includes items such as traditional curry dishes; rice plates; noodles; fried rice; salads; appetizers; entrees; soups and desserts.

Pick Thai is open Monday through Saturday 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Closed on Sundays. For more information, call 662-380-5428.