By LYNETTE HAALAND, Four Points News
Black Walnut Cafe opened this morning in Four Points, its first restaurant outside of the Houston market.
“Four Points fits our model – churches, schools, residents, businesses. We target a community-type environment,” said Joe Brassard, vice president of operations.
The upscale, fast casual restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and has close to 100 items on the menu, all made from scratch.
Located in River Place at 10817 RM 2222, Black Walnut is decorated with wood paneling, high back chairs and belt driven fans. It has a dog-friendly patio too, the chain’s first.
Black Walnut served more than 1,200 people at its preview event earlier this week.
The eatery will have 45 to 50 staffers when it is fully up and running.
“We know the demographics here are strong and growing,” said Brassard, who helped open the first Black Walnut eleven years ago in the Houston market.
Black Walnut has five cafes in Houston and the Four Points site is its first outside of homebase.
The chain is growing. It plans to open a second Austin Black Walnut in Austin Commons by the Domain a year from now. It will probably open one more in Austin in the future too, said Brassard.
The next Black Walnut will open in Allen, Tex. in the spring in the Dallas market. The company has purchased five properties in the Dallas market. It is looking in San Antonio, College Station, Atlanta and Colorado to expand.
“We look for communities like Four Points,” Haydar Kustu, director of business development and marketing. “We find niche neighborhoods where a lot of people live, work and enjoy life in a few mile radius.”
The Black Walnut salad is the menu favorite, which Brassard says makes up 6 percent of sales. Other favorites are the Tatanka Bison burger, eggs benedict, certified angus pot roast, multi-grain pasta and Asian tuna salad. It has 12 flavors of gelato and uses local bakers for its desserts.
“We have a highly customized menu,” Brassard said.