Magnolia & May will make its debut with takeout food only on May 26th. The dining room will be open to the public beginning May 29th.
Chip and Amanda Dunham are owners of the restaurant at 718 Mt. Moriah. Chip is the son of Jeffrey Dunham, who recently closed his long-time restaurant, The Grove Grill, in Laurelwood.
Describing the restaurant’s fare, Chip says, “We describe it as ‘country brasserie,’ which people traditionally think of as casual French fare, but we’re doing rustic cuisine from around the world. So, we’re in the Southeastern United States, but I don’t want to be pigeonholed doing Southern food. We have a falafel dish, fried tortilla crusted pork chop. We’re kind of all over the place right now. Just rustic food from around the world.”
The dining room reflects the food. “It’s really rustic. Raw wood. The wall we made out of whisky barrel staves. The bar top is one of the old bowling lanes from Imperial Lanes.”
Takeout will be the full menu with the exception of mussels and raw oysters. Takeout also will be available after the dining room opens. “Well do curbside. You can come in and pick it up. Whatever you're comfortable with."
His dad also will be working at the restaurant, Chip says. “He’ll fill in where he can.”
So, where does “Magnolia & May” come from? “Before each child is born, we have a family tradition of giving the child a nickname. My daughter’s name was ‘Magnolia’ and my sister’s daughter, we called her ‘Baby May’.”