Downtown's dining center, the radius around 7th and Grand, is constantly evolving. What was once Pasta Primavera turned into CityBilly and is now officially GUILD Restaurant, which is currently in its soft-open stage. Paul Pruitt of New School Restaurant Consulting (Roy Choi, David Reiss) has been working with CityBilly owners Joyce Paik and Grace Beck on an entirely new concept for the last few months. Though CityBilly didn't work, the team believed that the location had a lot of potential. For a restaurant to thrive there, it needed to serve a higher level of food and offer consistent service in an inviting environment on par with the rest of the neighborhood (Mas Malo, Bottega Louie, Mo-Chica, Industriel).
Pruitt brought in Knibb Design to add a New American feel to the space, but with some quirky (cuckoo clocks, chalkboard mural) touches. About that chalkboard mural: friend of the restaurant and The Tasting Kitchen's barman, Justin Pike, freehanded it. Antiques and modern pieces fill the light, airy 85-seat space, while chandeliers (not-yet-installed) will add an eye-catching element. As the restaurant is still only soft-open, many design elements, including a refresh of the facade, are not yet complete.
GUILD's consulting chef must go unnamed as he is still at another restaurant, but chef Brandon Corby (West 4th & Jane) is running the kitchen on a day to day basis. For now, that means lunch service from 11:30 until 2:30 p.m., but in the next couple of weeks, as the finishing touches are put on the interior design, GUILD will also open for dinner. Wine and beer is available to go along with the rustic spirit of farm-to-table fare. [EaterWire]