Come October, Mary Nguyen, chef-owner of Parallel Seventeen and Street Kitchen Asian Bistro, will unleash a third restaurant: Olive & Finch Eatery, Bakery & Market will open at 1552 East 17th Avenue, just two doors down from Parallel Seventeen, Nguyen's Vietnamese bistro -- but the new spot won't be an Asian concept.
Instead, the 55-seat, 1,500-square-foot space -- a new build out -- will focus, says Nguyen, on fresh-pressed juices, scratch-made pastries, hashes, coffee, soups, sandwiches and salads and prepared foods. "I wanted to do a restaurant that's casual but has really good food on the go -- a place where you can get something fast, fresh and healthy that's not fast food," explains Nguyen, who adds that she also has dietary restrictions that compelled her to open a place to eat that takes gluten-free allergies and other food-related risks seriously. "There aren't a lot of places out there that offer healthy options to those of us with food allergies, and because I have allergies of my own, I wanted to do a restaurant where people with diet restrictions could go and eat great food without sacrificing quality," she adds.
To that end, she'll roast her own turkeys and chickens in house, cure her own pastrami, make her own terrines and focaccia and source her other breads from City Bakery, Grateful bread and Trompeau Bakery. "I'm still working on the menu, but I can tell you that we're making a beef tongue sandwich that's going to be amazing," says Nguyen.
There's a market component, too, she reveals. "We'll have artisan oils and vinegars, some mustards, including my own, and all handmade kitchen-and-home products like place mats, napkins and tea towels, mostly made from organic and/or imported fabrics," she says, noting that the quarters will evoke a farmhouse motif with a "rustic, independent vibe."
Curbside takeaway, beer, wine and mimosas, a grab-and-go counter and full-service catering are also part of the plan.
"I've been looking for a space for quite a while, and when the opportunity presented itself right across the street, I knew it was the perfect location for what I envisioned," says Nguyen."
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Olive & Finch will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.