(or, Where Two or More Dreams are Gathered…
Tart was born a few years ago out of an evening conversation between Abby and I about how our personal dreams might intersect with what the Memphis community needed. Since we live in Midtown, that’s where our focus first landed.
Abby’s dreamt since leaving Culinary School in NOLA of opening a restaurant that served beautiful food, prepared from concept to execution in a way that cares for the earth and the human body and served in a way (and a place) that brings grace and joy to the spirit.
I’ve sparked for years on how to connect earnest emerging art talent whose way of expressing the world is a bit different, to those who would benefit from exposure to that expression. How to bring them each into the empowering field of the other?
The magic dust that fashioned those two desires into Tart, however, was a selfish one. We’re irredeemable food snobs. We’ve tried to curb it but we’re apparently unable to reform after so many years of exposure to the right way to make good food. We’re constantly on the prowl for foodie satisfaction.
We’ve been to Paris, Chicago, Asheville, New York, New Orleans; cities where magical places are always just a walk around the corner. We studied what these places have going for them and how that intersects with our own expertise and desires.
We decided we want pastries made with love and coffee made with know-how. We want rustic, make-love-to-your-palate French food with ingredients culled from France where appropriate and local folks where possible. We want all of it served with grace and smiles. We want a stimulating environment that creates a emotional experience marked by joy and pleasure. What if… we create that?
The ideas swirled: remember Sweet, in Cooper-Young? Sort if like that, but with our own stamp! Should it be in Cooper-Young? Crosstown? Overton Square? Ah, no, most definitely Cooper-Young.
We already spend a lot of time there because it has so many of the things that excite us: fantastic energy, good people. Great food that’s different from what we offer. Community. A walking/biking family lifestyle. No other part of this city felt as perfect as Cooper-Young to provide a sweet incubator for our love-borne concept.
So here we are. Or almost, at least; we’ve got some final touches left to make it yours. We’re painting walls, supervising outlet and light placement, making sure the restrooms have proper wall treatment for the immersive art installations you’ll see there, attracting just the right hires to make your experience a sweet one. We’re choosing artists, display options, uniforms and seating placement. We’ll have an opening date for you very soon!
(P. S. Have you heard about the CooperLoo Gallery yet?)