Landmark Restaurant’s New Space Unharmed Richmond, Va. – Bogart’s restaurant, a Fan landmark for more than 35 years, reopened its doors last week after narrowly escaping major fire damage at its new location on West Cary Street. The fire, which broke out in an outdoor shed behind the restaurant less than a month ago, was […]
Landmark Restaurant’s New Space Unharmed
Richmond, Va. – Bogart’s restaurant, a Fan landmark for more than 35 years, reopened its doors last week after narrowly escaping major fire damage at its new location on West Cary Street. The fire, which broke out in an outdoor shed behind the restaurant less than a month ago, was reported by neighbors and quickly extinguished by Richmond City fire fighters before it caused major damage to the restaurant.
Bogart’s left its previous home on North Lombardy in July, when the building it had occupied since 1970 came under new ownership. The move gave Bogart’s owners the opportunity to revamp the restaurant, which now enjoys a modern new space in a rapidly developing segment of the Fan.
Located at 1903 West Cary, the new restaurant boasts a 32-foot bar, large outdoor patio and free off-street parking. Although the restaurant’s interior is completely new, the atmosphere remains notably reminiscent of the bustling “back room” that made Bogart’s a Fan favorite for years.
“We are thrilled to be welcoming customers back to the new, improved Bogart’s,” said Jim Bacas, current owner. “The fire caused a minor setback, but we’re beginning a new chapter in the restaurant’s history with this great new space, updated menu and talented new chef, and one little setback isn’t going to prevent us from moving forward.”
Nick Hanson, Bogart’s new chef and co-owner, partnered with Bacas in July after a mutual friend introduced the two, when Bacas was preparing to shut Bogart’s doors for good. The partnership combined Hanson’s fresh talent with Bacas’ seasoned reputation, and meant that when Bogart’s closed its doors, it would be only temporary.
“I was going to throw in the towel and start my retirement,” said Bacas. “But then here comes this young guy, with the experience and the vision to really take Bogart’s to a whole new level. It really couldn’t have happened at a better time.”
Hanson entered Richmond’s restaurant scene in 2001 as head chef at Jimmy’s Gallery Grille, where he developed a reputation for introducing the unexpected to fine dining. Subsequent engagements at Sticky Rice and Tripps continued to garner favorable reviews, and in the weeks before Bogart’s closed he began winning over long-time customers with his new twists on restaurant classics.
The owners emphasize that the new location and updates do not mean Bogart’s has become a new restaurant.
“Make no mistake, we’ve brushed off the dust and polished things up,” said Hanson. “But the integrity of the restaurant is still intact. Bogart’s will always be its own special place, and getting a face lift is not going to change what the restaurant has meant to generations of Richmond residents.”
That face lift combines modern convenience with many of the details that make Fan architecture so appealing. Exposed brick walls, skylights and an original tin ceiling give Bogart’s new space enough patina to remind customers that they’re still in the place where local residents, artists and musicians have gathered for decades. Guests will still enjoy live entertainment but the improved layout, higher-quality food and invigorating atmosphere signal that the restaurant is ushering in a new era.
“What Bogart’s has been for 38 years, it remains,” remarks Bacas. “But we’ve brought customers some well-deserved improvements. Things are only going to get better.”
Established in 1970, Bogart’s has a rich history as one of Richmond’s favorite places to enjoy live music. Bogart’s has evolved from its early days as a weekend jazz club where coats and ties were required to a bustling Fan bar and restaurant where students and residents alike gather to enjoy a wide range of musical genres. Located at 1903 West Cary Street, the restaurant is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner, and offers take-out and catering services. There is live entertainment Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and off-street parking is available behind the residential buildings adjacent to the restaurant. More information about Bogart’s is available at www.bogartsinthefan.net.
From news release