It shouldn't be too difficult for diners to locate the new TB's Restaurant, Bar and Lounge (2015 E. 8th. St.), says owner Tim Smith; he'll just direct them to the massive mural of a black dog, painted on the wall of the City Club Building. That mural was painted about a year and a half ago to help direct diners to the entrance of Black Dog Kitchen, but apparently more than a few gallons of paint was required to make that restaurant a success; it closed a couple weeks back. For the time being, Smith says he has no plans to remove or alter the image as it serves as a monumental landmark.
For the past four years Smith has operated TB's Hot Dogs & Hoagies at E. 185 and Lakeshore, but he'll shutter that outfit to focus on his new downtown spot. He says that popular eatery combined with his bustling T-Bone's Catering business should provide him with a solid base of customers.
"I've built up quite a following doing festivals and catering," he says.
But TB's will be "completely different" than his casual east-side spot, he says. Downtown diners can look forward to a "higher end American-style restaurant specializing in steaks, seafood and pasta. Entrees, priced $19 to $25, will include steaks, scampi, lamb chops and lobster mac and cheese. Starters, priced $9 to $12, range from crab cakes and lobster bisque to blackened scallops and steamed mussels.
More affordable lunch options include soups, salads, sandwiches and a few entrees.
Smith says he was attracted by the location of the restaurant, which is in close proximity to countless downtown workers and residents.
"Everybody down there is looking for somewhere to go for lunch, happy hour and dinner," he says.
Smith says he hopes to open before Super Bowl kickoff time.