The restaurant will open at 310 S. Elm (right) next door to the planned 1618 site (center).
The restaurant will open at 310 S. Elm (right) next door to the planned 1618 site (center).

Restauranteurs Chris Blackburn and Sarah Keith, the pair behind Josephine’s Bistro and Lindley Park Filling Station, are opening a new restaurant.

Keith confirmed that they plan to open Blackburn’s Smokehouse and Raw Bar at 310 S. Elm Street, next door to the future location of a new 1618 restaurant, via email this afternoon.

Don Smith, with property owner Trace Holdings, said that a lease was signed at 2 p.m. today but declined to give more information other than that a restaurant with local owners would open in the space.

The ill-fated Grass Fed used to be located in the building. Smith said the proprietors, who later operated 310 BBQ there, “basically walked out on us.” Scuppernong Books opened a few doors down at the end of 2013, starting a small wave of revitalization on the block.

Keith did not provide further information.


  1. Last month, I saw a sign that read “we will be closed today” as I left Scuppernong Books at 310 BBQ. When I left the bookstore last Wednesday, that same sign was still there. As a matter of fact, I could see posters promoting events held in August and early September.

    When it comes to grass-fed burger restaurants, I’ll have to wait for the new Revolution Burger joint to open next spring.

  2. Grass-Fed had delicious burgers when they were open and true to their name. Too bad they changed ideas and became just another BBQ place. It was my fav. burger place when it was open b/c it was grass-fed, delicious, and reasonably priced.

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