As the Triangle food scene evolves and grows, it’s interesting to see new restaurant groups pop up. When I first arrived in Raleigh in 2008, it was all about Empire Eats, Chapel Hill Restaurant Group and Urban Foods. Today it’s all about Ashley Christensen, Eschelon and some smaller ones like JMR Kitchens which owns Taste small plates, the Oak and a new restuarant, more.! Slated to open officially on November 13, I had a chance to pop in for a preview visit this week so read on if you’d like to explore some more.!
Located in the old space that used to be the Blue Martini, Vintage Bar AND Mantra (long history here), more. is touted as an Italian-inspired small plates restaurant. I’ve hung out in this space many times so I was curious to see what they had done inside. The long space at more. still has a lovely covered patio for good weather nights but you’d be missing out on the refreshed interior. more. presents a dim and sexy ambiance with the polished stone floor, stylish dark seating and a long bar. Thankfully the folks at JMR Kitchens were smart enough to renovate the bar to the other side of their space which opens things up for the windows and sunlight.
more. also has a set of wine lockers up front for regular patrons who belong to their wine club. They expect to have 160 or so wine bottles available so if you’re an oenophile, you’ve found your place! There’s a small crowd milling about the bar awaiting a preview of their small plates menu, for lunch it runs from $7 – $15 for salads, sandwiches and more!
We start off with some salads which I pass on but my two guests seem to enjoy quite a bit! One Caesar salad and another arugula-pear option which would be my choice if I were a wabbit. Moving forward we get to sample some luscious and meaty meatballs, seared scallops and flanks steak served atop potato chips with chimichurri sauce, very nice. Overall I think more. does a very nice job cooking basic items very nicely and with a deft touch.
Of course given the restaurant hasn’t even opened yet, the staff is still shaking out the kinks in its service and front of the house operations so we shall see how things go once they open up! The staff is primarily dressed in black befitting a romantic, stylish date spot ambiance that more. is shooting for.
Given the history that JMR Kitchens has with its restaurants, more. fits right into the fold with tasty small plates similar to what might be served at its sister restaurants. The one main difference is that they are giving this tough S. Glenwood location a shot rather than staying in their traditional W. Raleigh neighborhood. So welcome to the neighborhood, more.! I’m curious to see where you go with this concept so if you’re in area, slide on by and check them out after 11/13.
116 N West Street
Raleigh, NC 27603