When Slate first opened, in 2015, I wasn’t much of a fan. It wasn’t that I couldn’t recommend the Restaurant Row newcomer, I just didn’t see any reason to.
All of the components seemed promising. The restaurant was the project of Atlanta’s Concentrics Restaurants, with several people involved with opening Luma on Park, though everyone was careful to point out there was no ownership connection; a decor by the Johnson Studio (now the Johnson Studio at Cooper Carry), which designed Prato (and more recently Luke’s Kitchen and Bar); and a charismatic and promising young chef, Dominic Rice, a Florida native who once worked at Luma on Park before adding some impressive New York restaurants to his resume and returning to Central Florida.
(Rice came back to the area to be the chef at Boca on Winter Park’s Park Avenue but left before that restaurant opened; Slate hired him right away.)