Updated 6:02 with new information about owner and projected opening.
In the last few days we've had word of two pending restaurants in Winter Park, Armando's in the former Hot Olives space, and an unnamed Italian restaurant from the folks at Luma.
Now comes word that a third restaurant is coming soon, this one in the former Kata Thai building on the corner of Morse Boulevard and Pennsylvania Avenue, right around the corner from where Armando's is going in. Big Pig is the name, according to a banner on the side of the building. Barbecue, burgers and beer, it touts. Probably not a whole lot more to know about it beyond that at this point, except when it might open. And who's behind it.
I think I know who it is, and I've got a call out to him. It's someone who has been involved in barbecue in the area for decades. You'll know the name as soon as I tell you, but let me verify it first. Stay tuned and I'll update this report as soon as I hear back.
I had thought that the owner is Sam Meiner, owner of Bubbalou's Bodacious BBQ. Why would I think that? Because he has been using that moniker for some time -- it's even incorporated into his email address -- so I figured that he was doing a rebrand of Bubbalou's.
But no. The owner of the new restaurant is Perry Inman, who owns P.R.'s Mexican restaurant just a few blocks away. Inman told me this afternoon that he is planning barbecue, burgers and milk shakes and plans to have the place open by the end of June. (Yes, yes, I know -- they all say that and then it gets to the point of inspections and everything slows down; so we'll see how close it comes.)
Inman said he is going to paint the inside of the building pink and then have a graffiti party for people to come in and finish the detail work. He's going to charge $5 for graffiti artists to participate and, because he hails from Alabama, donate the proceeds to people in that state who have been affected by the recent tornados.
I'll let you know when the party will be, and when the restaurant is ready to start smoking.
Oh, and about the name of the restaurant -- better not write that one in stone just yet. Meiner and Inman have to hash out the legalities on who owns the name. My guess? This restaurant will not be called Big Pig when it opens.
And thanks to Deputy Dog Jen Dienst for snapping the photo here.