RICHMOND, Va. — This weekend local up-and-coming chef Rocco Bernstein plans to host the grand opening of his new restaurant, Snug’s Artisan Lounge & Noshery, which is designed to provide the most calm and private dining atmosphere available in the city.
The new eatery, located in Scott’s Addition, has been built in a space that once operated as the handicap stall in a now-defunct hardware store bathroom and features a menu dedicated to the delicate nuances of upscale Midwestern cuisine such as decadent creme fraiche lutefisk hotdish and velvety himalayan sea salt beer-cheese bisque.
With only one table, two chairs, and a cheese cart for ambiance, Bernstein guarantees that Snug’s will deliver a dining experience as cozy as humanly possible.
The inspiration for Snug’s Artisan Lounge & Noshery goes back to Bernstein’s early childhood in the serene suburbs of Minnetonka.
“When I was eight, my older brother locked me in the crawl space under our deck with nothing but a pack of glow-in-the-dark stars and a Lunchables to sustain me,” he recalled. “After the panic subsided, I decided to make the most of my unfortunate situation. I stuck those stars to the spider-covered ceiling and broke out my bologna and crackers. As I ate the snack that I constructed myself, in a space that afforded me the privacy I lacked in a bustling household, the idea for Snug’s was born.”
Drawing from that moment, Bernstein’s focus for Snug’s remains dedicated to providing the most intimate setting possible for his guests.
“Too often in this world we are distracted by the insanity around us and cannot focus on the good food or company in front of us. I want to bring that sense of serenity and privacy I found in that crawl space to the people of Richmond.”
Bernstein expects to draw quite a crowd for the grand opening, but still has not figured out how to host the onslaught of hungry patrons in the tiny space.
“It’s just one of those things that I’m sure will work itself out,” Bernstein shrugged. “I emerged from that crawl space with a dream in my heart and asbestosis in my lungs over twenty years ago, and there is absolutely nothing that is going to stop me from turning Snug’s into a triumphant success.”
Reservations for this novel restaurant have been booked through 2019, in part due to the very limited seating capacity. Those who have been added to the waitlist are hoping that the restaurant will stay in business long enough for their reservations to be met.