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Staff photo by Erin O. Smith / Marcus Garner, co-owner and chef of Wine Down, poses for a photo at Wine Down in Ooltewah. Garner and his wife, Georgia, plan to open in December a breakfast, brunch and lunch-oriented restaurant next to the Wine Down to be known as Neighbor.

Six years after opening the Wine Down Bistro & Lounge in Ooltewah, Marcus and Georgia Garner are revamping the lounge portion of their Cambridge Square bar and restaurant into a new breakfast, brunch and lunch concept with a Southern flair.

The new eatery known as Neighbor is scheduled to open in December and will feature a Southern mix of breakfast favorites and drink options every day from 7 a.m to 2 p.m.

"There's no true Mom and Pop breakfast places in the Ooltewah area so we thought there was an opportunity to pivot that way and offer a locally owned, unique place for breakfast, brunch or lunch," Marcus Garner said.

Neighbor, which derives its name both from its adjacent location to Wine Down and the greeting frequently offered by the Garners to most all visitors and workers, will feature house-made biscuits & gravy, breakfast pastries, breakfast sandwiches, build-your-own breakfast plates, house-made sausages, country hams, fresh salads, hand-crafted sandwiches as well as some traditional staples.

Beyond the food, patrons can expect a coffee bar featuring local beans, espresso, lattes, and cappuccinos as well as grab and go items for those who are in a hurry, Garner said.

"Definitely Southern but with a modern twist," Garner said of the menu which is still taking shape. "We want people to find their old favorites that are part of the region's culinary history, but like Wine Down, we want to introduce people to some more innovative styles and dishes."

Garner said most meal entrees at Neighbor will be priced around $10 to $12 and the restaurant will offer both indoor dining or takeout options every day.

Neighbor will include seating for about 55 people in the bistro and 14 seats at the bar, plus additional seating in an outdoor patio, Garner said.

The Wine Down was among the first restaurants to open at Cambridge Square in 2015 and a little over a year ago the Garners took over a former Mo Jo Burrito site at Cambridge Square for additional lounge space.

For Neighbor, Garner said they will be converting the lounge space into a full-service restaurant to offer a new concept while continuing to serve the loyal clientele Wine Down has built over the past six years.

"We're going for a bit of nostalgia in the design of the space," Georgia Garner said. "And we have come to see Cambridge Square as an extended neighborhood which makes the pleasure of serving our patrons that much more rewarding. The name just fits."

The Garners moved to Chattanooga eight years ago after working in Baltimore for Kimpton hotels and restaurants. Garner said Cambridge Square, which features a variety of office, retail and restaurant clients, has been ideal for their bistro and lounge.

"We are very fortunate to have been extremely well-received in Ooltewah," Georgia Garner said. "Part of the reason for that success, aside from the many loyal customers, is Marcus's ability to adapt and change our menus based on the feedback we receive from patrons. Neighbor fills a hole that people have been talking about for a long time and we finally decided that we were well-suited to fill it."

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfreepress.com or at 423-757-6340

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