For all those burger-lovers who live in downtown or midtown to whom driving out to the Promenade at Chenal feels like driving to Conway, good news: Big Orange, the immensely popular West Little Rock burger joint, is expanding to the east. John Beachboard, a partner, alongside Scott McGehee and Herren Hickingbotham, of a burgeoning restaurant group that also includes Local Lime and ZaZa (which Beachboard and McGehee own alone), confirms that the long negotiations over space along Markham and University (which we first reported on back in July 2012) have concluded. A second Big Orange is slated in the former space of Relax the Back in the open air shopping complex Midtowne Little Rock sometime early this summer.
Beachboard said the Midtowne location would have more seating than the West Little Rock location with a similar all-weather patio set-up as Local Lime. They'll aim for a family friendly vibe, but, Beachboard said, they're hoping to have a vibrant bar crowd, too. To that end, they'll have 16 to 20 speciality beers on tap, and they hope to be the first restaurant in the state to offer wine on draft, casks of house red and house white that're changed constantly (draft wine is more eco friendly and fresher, according to Beachboard; it's also really trendy).
John's brother, Matt Beachboard, currently overseeing operations at the West Little Rock Big Orange, will likely take on management of both restaurants, John Beachboard said. In full disclosure, Matt Beachboard is my brother-in-law.