Reid’s Café and Catering Ready for Grand Opening this Friday and Saturday After Expansion

Published Friday, May 4, 2018 at 10:25 am

Members of the Avery Chamber and local community were on hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday afternoon with Tina Houston on scissor duty.

The new dining space at Reid’s Cafe was recently completed and a grand opening celebration will take place this Friday and Saturday. 

By Nathan Ham

Reid’s Café and Catering has called the High Country home for 16 years and recently completed a big expansion project to add more seating, wine and beer taps and even more quality food selections.

An open house and ribbon cutting has been scheduled for 5 p.m. on Friday afternoon.

Tina Houston, owner and operator of Reid’s Café near Banner Elk, said with more customers and the desire to add more options to their menu, growing the business was a no-brainer.

“We felt a little spatial tension. We were expanding beyond what our floor space allowed and just the growing needs of our customers, we knew that we were short on space so we went from five inside tables to 15 inside tables with an addition of bar seating,” Houston said.

Houston said that their business has grown from catering and just a few small tables to a complete dining experience.

“It sort of snowballed. We started out with just lunch, we picked up catering and expanded our catering a bit and added dinner about a year in,” she said.

Located in the Grandfather Center on Highway 105 near Banner Elk, the retail space next door to Reid’s Café became available, making it the perfect chance to expand the business since the spot is open right next door and the restaurant would not have to pick up and move.

“Once we made the decision, I spoke with everybody I worked with to make sure it wasn’t a one-sided decision,” said Houston.

So far, the expansion has had nothing but positive reviews from the customers and staff.

“We’ve had a really great response since opening. I was terrified to lose that really sweet, intimate feel we had, but the response has been really good,” said Houston.

Alek Schober, the chef at Reid’s Café, says that they plan on changing the menu every two months to keep a nice variety of cuisines for customers to enjoy as well as keeping as much local food sources as they can.

“Wherever we can, we want to buy locally from farmers and even from the coast we try to get as much from North Carolina and South Carolina as we can,” Schober said. “Even our fisherman and oyster farmers, we like to really know them as best we can. We’ve taken tours of their farms just to make sure they do things the way that we do.”

The expansion also included a brand new bar space that currently has both wine and beer taps. Much like the food sources, bartender and front house manager Brad Kelly hopes to keep a lot of selections from area breweries.

“We definitely want to keep some local stuff around but there’s so much to choose from,” he said. “We try and provide different styles throughout.”

Right now, Reid’s Café has five beer taps and six different canned beers available with all of them being different styles.

“As we progress and evolve and grow, our clientele and our regulars will come to realize that things will be changing overtime and we will give them something to look forward to as well,” Kelly said.

On Saturday as part of the grand opening, some live music will also be featured.

The expansion took just five weeks to complete, thanks to a lot of help from inside the community. Shane and Crystal Turbyfill provided the design for the new space, Andy McDaniels poured the concrete countertops, Big Oak Wood Works built the tables and benches and Blue Ridge Upholstery provided the leatherwork for the seating.

Also included in different areas around the café are some wonderful works of art from Tina’s husband, Jerry Cantwell. Cantwell is a faculty member at Appalachian State University and received his Master’s Degree in School Counseling from Appalachian. Some of his work can be found on his website.

Reid’s Café is open from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

For menus, catering information and more, visit the Reid’s Café website.

Tina Houston and the Reid’s Cafe staff poise for the ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday afternoon.

Owner Tina Houston and chef Alek Schober.

Bartender and front house manager Brad Kelly pours a cold beer out of one of their newly installed taps.

The new bar area at Reid’s Cafe will offer your favorite wine, beer and cocktails.

Several paintings from Tina’s husband, Jerry Cantwell, decorate the walls of the cafe.

The original dining space at Reid’s Cafe also went through some improvements and enhancements.

This view from the original dining area takes a look through into the newly-built bar and larger dining area.

Reid’s Cafe is located at the Grandfather Center on Highway 105 near Banner Elk.

Raw NC oysters are quickly becoming one of the more popular dishes at the cafe.

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