In addition to the upcoming relocation of Hendershot’s (read more about that from Gabe), there’s more food business in the works. The building that has housed Roberts Auto Repairs, at the corner of Prince and Park, is changing tenants, and Firehouse Subs will be moving in following some renovations. Considering it’s basically next door to Subway, things could get interesting.
More exciting are the changes afoot at what has been Strand Haircutting for years in Five Points. Owner Michael Joyce has decided that, after 35 years of owning his own business, he wants to scale things back, but he’s renting a chair from Karma Salon on Baxter. Moving in will be a business known for now as The Bakery at Five Points, admittedly a working title, run by Thom Leonard, famed in the bread-making world far beyond Athens. Happily for our town, his wife, Elizabeth Weeks Leonard, grew up here, went to law school at UGA, and now is back there as a professor, thus leading to Thom’s presence. Clearly, the space has never been a bakery, so there is significant interior work to be done, but Leonard hopes to be up and running in May, following approval of plans, etc. Rather than focus on wholesale (although he will do some), he hopes to take advantage of the location and retail to individuals instead. The bakery will do European-style bread, including baguettes, plus pastry on the bread end of the spectrum (i.e., croissants, brioche, scones, muffins, not cakes and cookies), naturally leavened, hearth baked, made with organic flour and even some regionally sourced flour from a mill in North Carolina. There will be coffee but no chairs—perhaps a shelf on which to set your purchases while you sip. Leonard is excited about opening up as well as about Athens in general, talking with enthusiasm about the great local restaurants and good beer, more of which is on the way, and we would seem to be very lucky to have him.
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