The longtime home of one of the area’s favorite gourmet-to-go and luncheon spots will soon host a new café and catering operation.
Movable Feast closed abruptly at the end of 2018, after a 30 year run and following the unexpected death of one of its owners. The site at 2510 W. 5th Street in Wilmington has been vacant ever since.
Now restaurateur Paul Bouchard of Tonic Bar and Grill has confirmed work is underway to open a new café and ‘gourmet to go’ operation at the location, “very similar” to Movable Feast’s broad offerings but “definitely a different style.”
The site will also house the kitchen and related activities for Bouchard’s catering and banquet business, which because of expansions at Tonic’s downtown restaurant, needed a new home.
The new eatery will be called “Park Café,” in a nod to nearby Wawaset Park. Park Café has applied for a liquor license and will showcase daily specials and seasonal and local cuisines in display cases while continuing to feature ‘soup and sandwich’ seating for lunch service.
“We’ll have crab cakes and poached halibut and a version of chicken salad … the case will change daily and seasonally,” Bouchard said.
Bouchard says he is waiting on final approvals from the city before he is able to complete renovations and open the new location, which he is hopeful will be later this summer.
He also said they are aiming to have outdoor seating for up to 20 people, which will help accommodate customers so long as COVID-related restrictions are in place for Delaware restaurants. Plans involve replacing the existing flagstone patio and installing a pergola.
Other planned renovations include a new HVAC system, a new roof, new drywall and a vaulted ceiling, raised six feet higher and bringing in more natural light.
The iconic exposed stone wall inside the restaurant will remain.
Bouchard invested in the property with partner Chris Blackwell, and he says the original building once housed the operations of his family business, Blackwell and Sons.
“So it’s kind of like he just got his own property back, which is kind of fun.”