The closing of St. Charles Exchange happened quickly, but the conversion of that classy space into the newest addition to Fernando Martinez’s restaurant empire happened even more quickly. The second location of Mussel & Burger Bar will open today, Tuesday, Oct. 6 for lunch at 113 S. Seventh St.
Martinez explained in a phone interview that for the first several weeks, the Downtown M&BB will be open only during lunch hours, so the staff can shake down and get all the details of the new space worked out. Dinner during the week will be added in a few weeks, and then Saturday and Sunday hours will be worked in too.
The popular Taylorsville Rd. location of the first M&BB will continue as it is. In the new location Martinez will add to the menu offerings, to accommodate what he thinks a downtown tourist and business clientele might find appealing. He is adding a steak selection, pan-roasted chicken, two new burger ideas, a fish dish and an appetizer of pork belly and spicy rock shrimp.
He earlier said that he has plans for the large and attractive outdoor space in the rear of the building, a kind of air shaft, stuck as it is between the structures on Sixth and Seventh St., but planted with threes and shrubs. In the spring he hopes to turn that into an outdoor lounge with live music and lounge furniture.