Just four months after opening their Fishmonger Seafood Market and Cafe in Poncey-Highland, Skip Engelbrecht and Nhan Le (8ARM, Octopus Bar) and chef Bradford Forsblom announced a second location is headed to Kirkwood this fall. The fishmonger should open in mid-October in the Pratt Pullman district.

Taking over building number seven next to Dailies and Sides restaurant on Rogers Street, this second Fishmonger seats close to 50 people inside and features a raw bar and full bar serving beer, wine, cocktails and frozen drinks. The patio also seats 100 people outside.

As at Poncey-Highland, expect the Pratt Pullman restaurant to be counter service. However, servers will float around the dining room and patio to take additional food and drink orders. Engelbrecht describes the Kirkwood fishmonger as “super family-friendly” with a dog-friendly patio and the distinct atmosphere he and Le are known for creating at their other restaurants through music, relaxed atmosphere and design.

Sheaves of fresh oysters, shrimp, clams, mussels chill on ice ready for sale at Fishmonger in Atlanta.

Bunch of fresh oysters, shrimp, clams, mussels at Fishmonger in Poncey-Highland.
Ryan Fleischer

A man in a shirt and shorts sits on the railing waiting for his food order at the Fishmonger.  Whitewashed brick wall lined with canned fish for sale, bread, cookbooks and hanging plants.

Poncey-Highland location.
Ryan Fleischer

A group of friends gather around the high table in the middle of the market with bottles of wine eating and laughing at the fish shop in Atlanta.

The Poncey-Highland location will remain BYOB.
Ryan Fleischer

One big difference between the two Fishmonger locations is the lack of a seafood market in Pratt Pullman. Engelbrecht says he and his partners may consider introducing a market if the demand is there, and have even planned the possibility of a retail wing at Kirkwood as part of the design.

“There is a lot of space. We just don’t want to start with it,” says Engelbrecht. “A market is not as easy as one might think because it is very much a process and quality control is so important. We want to make sure this is in place and the neighborhood and the families here really want it first.”

With the building construction complete and all necessary permits in place, Engelbrecht says they are now free to focus on the restaurant’s design, including carrying over key elements from the Poncey-Highland location such as purple, pink and red neon lighting, carefree decor and casual seating arrangements.

Like the menu at Poncey-Highland, Forsblom’s Kirkwood’s menu won’t have much in the way of fried fish, but instead will focus on delicate blackened grouper filets, crudo, fresh oysters and salads, soups and sandwiches. with seafood. Also look for six to seven specials on the menu each day.

The sandwich grilled by the group at Fishmonger in Atlanta is topped with Florida dressing, herb slaw and pickled peppers served on a toasted bun slathered in nori butter.

Broiled grouper sandwich topped with Florida dressing, herb salad and pickled peppers served on a toasted bun spread with nori butter
Ryan Fleischer

Lunch menu for the Fishmonger's Cafe in Atlanta.

Ryan Fleischer

“We knew we wanted to open multiple Fishmonger locations when we came up with the idea, and then to see how well it’s doing in Poncey-Highland, it just made the decision easier,” says Engelbrecht. “We’re looking to open a total of four locations in Atlanta, with new fishmongers in Buckhead and on the west side. There may even be a fifth in Sandy Springs.”

Engelbrecht and Le originally intended to open Three Heart Coffee Bellsmouth Cafe and Restaurant in the building now slated for Fishmonger. The pandemic stopped those plans. Then, last December, Pratt Pullman District owners Adam Rosenfelt and Maureen Meulen announced they planned to open a restaurant called Homage there with Dailies and Sides chef Chris Hughes, but decided to offer it again instead Engelbrecht and Let space to open Fishmonger.

“I really appreciate what Maureen and Adam are doing here because they’re not necessarily real estate people. They are in the entertainment business,” says Engelbrecht. “They came to Pullman, realized its potential and jumped at the opportunity. There’s so much creative stuff going on here and it’s really cool, and we’re excited for Fishmonger to be a part of that.”

Later this fall, Engelbrecht, Le and Forsblom will open Small Fry at Atlanta Dairies on Memorial Drive, a counter-service restaurant with a walk-up window serving fried chicken and fried fish sandwiches, falafel burgers, fish nuggets and shrimp baskets.

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