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As customers enter the new location of The Mad Priest // Coffee & Cocktails, they'll see Moroccan tile adorning the floor and counter and Turkish-inspired light fixtures.
some text Matt Sears of Haskel Sears Design built the new Mad Priest coffee and cocktail bar on Cherry Street and is a co-owner along with Mad Priest Coffee Roasters' owner Michael Rice. Connected to the coffee counter is the former bar from Chattanooga-renowned Yesterday's restaurant for people to sit and sip either coffee or alcohol.

Mad Priest sites

1900 Broad St.

Open Tuesday-Saturday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

719 Cherry St.

Open Monday-Thursday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday from 7 a.m. to midnight and Saturday from 8 a.m. to midnight.

Full service begins daily at 5 p.m.

The Mad Priest Coffee & Cocktails opened this week in Chattanooga's downtown at 719 Cherry St., but owner Michael Rice said he hopes the unique concept and atmosphere will help transport customers to another part of the world.

With décor described as "Old World-meets-Ottoman Empire-meets-French Revolution," Rice said the new bar and restaurant's design was inspired from Mad Priest's namesake — a character in the novel "The Count of Monte Cristo" by Alexandre Dumas — and the mission of the local business to connect people, create cultural experiences and support refugees in the area.

Rice first opened Mad Priest Coffee Roasters at 1900 Broad St. in 2016 before expanding to the Cherry Street location.

"When people walk in the door, we want them to feel like they are walking into a different place," Rice said Thursday during the second day of grand opening celebrations. "It's the little details that make us different."

Matt Sears of Haskel Sears Design built the Cherry Street location and is a co-owner with Rice, although Rice will be handling the daily operations. The pair raised $40,000 for the new space in a Kickstarter campaign earlier this year.

As customers walk in the 2,000-square-foot space, they'll see Moroccan tile adorning the floor and coffee counter and Turkish-inspired light fixtures.

Connected to the coffee counter is the former bar from Chattanooga-renowned Yesterday's restaurant for people to sit and sip either coffee or alcohol and several small tables with chess boards on top for a quick match. The whole space can hold about 50 people inside at either the bar, tables and booths or lounge area. A back patio will also be able to seat 20 people, which is a part of the new Seventh Street Alley development project known as "Passageways 2.0."

Along with Mad Priest coffee, the bar will serve alcohol, including two house cocktails created by bartenders in Nashville and Chicago. The new drinks are called the "Royalist," which Rice said is a take on a gin and tonic with fino sherry and botanical syrup, and "Sinbad the Sailor," which is similar to a daiquiri with homemade spiced syrup.

"From the cocktails to the coffee, we want to serve the best," Rice said. "We are always educating ourselves to become better and continually refining."

Mad Priest will continue to keep its location on Broad Street open for people to stop by and grab a cup of coffee between the hours of 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday. The new cocktail bar, which also serves food, will be open Monday to Thursday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday from 7 a.m. to midnight, Saturday from 8 a.m. to midnight and closed Sundays.

A menu of cocktail drinks displayed above the bar shows a price range from $9 to $12.

The food menu includes breakfast items around $5 each and lunch items, including salads and sandwiches ranging from $6 for a vegetarian wrap to $10 for a Cuban or prosciutto and fig sandwich. The restaurant will be full service starting at 5 p.m. daily.

Friday is the last day of grand opening celebrations and there will be live music from local artist Swayvvo in the evening. For more information, visit madpriestcha.com or visit their Facebook page at "The Mad Priest."

Contact staff writer Allison Shirk Collins at ashirk@times freepress.com, @Allison_Shirk or 423-757-6651.

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