Craig and Amy Bailey, the owners of Rhinehart's Oyster Bar, check on the progress of their new restaurant on North Belair Road in Evans. The restaurant's Columbia County location is expected to open in mid-May.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
The owners of a "beyond casual" restaurant in Evans say they hope to begin operating by mid-May, but they say an exact opening date isn't ready to be announced.
"It's under a lid because we don't know," Amy Bailey, owner of Rhinehart's Oyster Bar, said about the restaurant located at 3051 North Belair Road. "It's inevitable; we will have to give birth at some point. The baby is going to drop!"
Mrs. Bailey, who co-owns the business with her husband Craig, said about 85 percent of the restaurant's construction is now complete.
In preparation of the restaurant's opening, Mrs. Bailey said a third "Early Taste of Rhinehart's" event will be held from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday at Mark Yount's Tire and Auto Works, at 4277-A Washington Road in Evans. The event, she said, will provide free samples of Rhinehart's food such as shrimp and oysters.
"We want to do these taste tests, because we're not just planning on being here for 10 years," she said. "We want to be here for the next 50 years. We want to become a good part of this community. We're not taking (our customers') business for granted. We know that we are going to have to earn it."
Since construction began in December, Mrs. Bailey said, the restaurant has suffered a few setbacks.
"For one thing, they had this wall and it was beautiful, but I said that doesn't look like a Rhinehart's, it looks like a Hilton Head," she said. "I want our walls to look like you just ripped down your Aunt Thelma's shed and put it on that wall. We're supposed to look like a tree house. It's all a bunch of little things."
Despite the dilemmas, Mrs. Bailey said, she is looking forward to opening up shop. She added that the restaurant's facade and decor will look similar to the Rhinehart's in Richmond County, but it will be smaller.
"We have a small front porch," she said. "We're going to add on as we need it."
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