New Restaurant Bar in City Center Lehigh Valley Downtown Allentown

Restaurateurs to launch new concept in former Federal Grill space this summer

The owners and chef of The Bayou announced today that they will open a restaurant and bar in the space formerly occupied by the Federal Grill at 536 Hamilton Street. The yet-to-be-named restaurant, which will be different in concept than The Bayou or the Federal Grill, will open in August 2015.

Owners Morris Taylor and Cristian Duarte will operate the restaurant and Tyler Baxter will serve as executive chef. In March 2014 the team opened The Bayou, a Southern-inspired restaurant and cocktail bar in Bethlehem, calling it “a fine dining experience disguised as a casual country restaurant.” The Bayou, which is located at the site of the former Hawthorne House restaurant, was named one of the Top 100 Restaurants in America in the 2014 OpenTable Diners’ Choice Awards.

“We’ve been following the progression of downtown Allentown from PPL Center to everything City Center is doing to redevelop the city, and we like the challenge of bringing an old space back to life,” Taylor said. “We’re looking forward to adding a place to Downtown Allentown that’s fun, upbeat and lively with great food for people to share with family and friends at a price point that everyone feels is a good value.”

“I’ve been very impressed with both the food and the service this team offers at The Bayou, and can’t wait for them to introduce an urban dining experience in City Center,” said Brett Kemmerer, City Center’s director of restaurant development. “With the Three City Center office building and the Lehigh County Courthouse across the street, I’m sure this restaurant will enjoy even more business than the popular Federal Grill did.”

The 536 Hamilton Street space is in one of several historic buildings City Center owns and is restoring in and around the 500 block of Hamilton Street. City Center is leasing the buildings’ first floors, which range from 700 to 4,100 square feet, as retail and restaurant space and upper floors as loft-style office space. Businesses in City Center’s renovated historic properties include ROAR Social House, Tony Luke’s, Sarbari and City Center’s coworking space Velocity.

More on the Bayou owners to open a new concept restauarnt in Downtown Allentown in the media:


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City Center Lehigh Valley is a major mixed-use development that is helping transform downtown Allentown, Pennsylvania, into one of America’s most vibrant urban communities and a regional center of excellence for business, culture and metropolitan living. With Allentown’s new arena, PPL Center, at its core, City Center includes more than 1 million square feet among three Class A office towers, the Renaissance Allentown Hotel, STRATA Flats and The Shops at City Center, upscale restaurant space and a coworking space called Velocity. City Center’s total investment in downtown Allentown is $400 million, with additional development of office, residential, retail and green space underway.

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