Instead, let's concentrate on the positive part of this announcement: that Hospitality Development Group is bringing Fish & Co. and Chef Louis Osteen to 12South to take over the former space of the Blind Pig No. 55. A James Beard Award winner, Chef Osteen serves as executive chef over the kitchens at Fish & Co. and HDG's original restaurant, upscale Gulch spot Watermark. His approach to Southern specialties has won him national acclaim, and under his auspices Fish & Co. has developed a decadent menu of high-concept Low Country food as well as a raw bar and cocktail menu that has quickly become one of my favorite happy hour destinations.
As wonderful as it must be to live in the Adelicia and occasionally try to borrow a cup of money from your penthouse neighbor Taylor Swift, the concept of having access to such a gastronomic treasure trove in the lobby would make me want to move permanently into the health club. Plus, with limited parking and visibility from the street, Fish & Co. might very well have been jinxed no matter how good the food was, not unlike its precursor Miro District.
The 12South neighborhood seems to make a lot more sense as a place for a jewel like this. Although Chef Osteen rightfully would put his food up against anybody's menu, a comfortable Southern seafood/bistro atmosphere probably has a better chance at success without the pressure of similar restaurants across the street to siphon off diners at a lower price point like at the Adelicia location.
HDG owner Jerry Brown seems to think so and took the prudent and commendable step of consulting with some members of the neighborhood before making the move. “In listening to the neighborhood diners at 12 South, we realized Fish & Co. was a better fit for that location. Fish & Co. has been so well received by customers and critics that it makes sense to bring the neighborhood the food quality, style and flair that Fish & Co. delivers.
"Many of Louis’ popular menu items, along with the raw bar, will be incorporated into the new menu. Some of those include Shrimp & Grits, Charleston She Crab Soup with Aged Sherry and simply grilled fresh fish prepared various ways to satisfy the health-conscious diner. We’re also planning on offering daily specials, and more importantly, we’re adding lunch to our service which gives the neighbors more choices during the day."
In another nod to the importance of knowing your neighbors, HDG is moving Jeff McGregor, a 12South resident, from his position at Watermark to manage Fish & Co., which is scheduled to reopen this Thursday, Feb. 3, serving lunch and dinner seven days a week. Hours of operation: 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday.
There is no official word about what or who might be moving into the Adelicia space, but the commitment to move out and concentrate on just two restaurants instead of three was not made lightly. Here's hoping that Chef Osteen, HDG, and the 12South neighborhood all find what they are looking for with Fish & Co.'s new location.