FAIRE MARKET & CAFE
Jim Still cut his chops in Austin, Texas, running a nightclub inside that city’s world famous Sixth Street entertainment district. But this morning, we caught up with Jim manning a cash register just a couple blocks off Market, inside the new Faire Market & Café. He’s the general manager. So why’s he flying solo this morning?
“We've got one of our employees on the corner of 9th and Orange, handing out samples of breakfast sandwiches and free coffee coupons.”
Maybe we should get down to 9th and Orange. What do they have out there?
“Three sandwiches named after local neighborhoods: the ‘Highlands,’ the ‘Forty Acres’ and the ‘Cool Springs.’ The Highlands is a croissant sandwich with a fried egg, sausage patty and red pepper jam. The Forty Acres is an everything bagel with pork roll and American cheese. Cool Springs is a vegetarian breakfast burrito. And we offer the option to build your own breakfast sandwich, too.”
Those sound great, actually.
“The kitchen is really what sets us apart. We've got a talented executive chef named Barret May, who has been looking for an opportunity like this for a long time. He’s been a sous-chef at Stitch House, he worked at Victory, he worked at Home Grown Cafe … but he's never had the opportunity to have his own kitchen and produce his own food. He’s all about fresh, locally sourced, organic, sustainable ingredients. When he puts prepared food on our shelves, they're all things that he's made fresh that morning or the day before.”
We’ve already had a couple of those grab-and-go sandwiches – they’re great.
“We haven't really done much advertising, but the lunch crowd has grown through word of mouth and people bringing their friends. And while those people are grabbing something off the shelf or ordering a sandwich, they’re realizing there's more to be offered here. There's Little Goat Coffee from Newark and Levitea, a local tea brand by a woman named Tish. We have a few grocery offerings, some produce, and we're right next door to Girard Craft & Cork, so people can pick up a bottle of wine.”
“We’re just trying to be a part of this new, upcoming neighborhood. The Midtown Park residents are slowly but surely making their way over and checking it out and giving us ideas. We still have a lot of shelf space to fill and we're absolutely open to requests and recommendations.”
And what have people been asking for?
“Grocery staples, right off the bat. We opened with a bunch of specialty stuff, but we will start doing milk and eggs and orange juice and that sort of thing.”
Anything else we should know?
“Girard Craft & Cork is doing free wine tastings every Friday from 4pm to 7pm, and we're going to start doing vendor tastings on our end. So Fridays are a good time to get the word out about.”