Long-running St. Matthews restaurant Meridian Café, 112 Meridian Ave., has closed, but its owner, Kristin Fults, is planning to open a new restaurant, the Melrose Café, in Prospect. Fernando Martinez’s OLÉ Restaurant Group will take over the St. Matthews property for a second location of the popular Highlands fast casual restaurant El Taco Luchador later this year.

The details of the swap are detailed in a story posted by EatDrinkTalk. In short, Fults found that the St. Matthews property needed upgrading for her to be able to expand her menu that way she wanted, and did not feel she could make the capital expenditures.

Her new restaurant will be at 13206 Hwy. 42 in Prospect, in a strip mall that is near the location of the legendary, long-closed Melrose Inn. The new location has good parking and upgraded kitchen, and offers less competition than did her St. Matthews site for the kind of food service – fast-casual service during the week, and full service weekend brunches – she wants to offer. She also plans a comfortable coffee lounge for those who want to stay, sip and schmooze.

Martinez’s restaurant group does not want to discuss their plans until they draw up the ideas for renovations.