Restaurant Rumblings

New downtown restaurant will serve up stiff drinks and Southern charm

New downtown restaurant will serve up stiff drinks and Southern charm

Arro Austin cocktail ELM restaurant group
Irene's will serve boozy punches and strong cocktails.  Courtesy of Arro/Facebook

The folks at ELM Restaurant Group show no signs of slowing down their domination of the local dining scene.

On the heels of two major announcements — the opening of Italian concept Italic and a second location of Easy Tiger — the group is planning another new restaurant located downtown.

Irene's, which is taking up residence at 506 West Ave. in the former Joe's Bar & Grill space, will be open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. According to a press release, the spot is named after ELM partner Chad Gluckson's grandmother, a Southern charmer described as a "drinking, smoking, gambling woman with an immense heart and a keen understanding of true hospitality."

To capture the essence of its namesake, Irene's will feature house-mixed boozy punches and "strong, well-conceived cocktails" from beverage director Craig Collins. Chef Andrew Curren's menu will include easy breakfasts that you can grab on the go (buttered toast and cinnamon rolls), hearty lunches for downtown workers (think meatball subs and tuna melts) and blue plate specials for dinner. 

Irene's has an anticipated opening date of April 2015. Italic is also slated to open in the spring of 2015.