Proprietors of Fine & Dandy Restaurant placed a sign on the front door Thursday, stating, “We’re outta here! We’re moving. Sorry for the inconvenience. We miss you already.”
Fine & Dandy, an original tenant of the District at Eastover, which opened in 2017, announced the closing on the restaurant’s Facebook and Instagram pages Thursday as well.
People were in the building Friday, beginning the process of packing up and moving out.
“The plan is to get re-opened by the second half of next year,” said Fine & Dandy owner Ray-Scott Miller. “We have had a lot of developers reach out to us about locating on their land or in their development, whether that be in Brandon, Flowood, Madison, Ridgeland and even back here in Jackson.”
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Even as Miller laments that he is closing the doors of his restaurant in the District of Eastover in Jackson, he looks forward to what he believes are better days, re-opening the trendy restaurant sometime in 2023.
“Since we announced we are moving, we have been overwhelmed by the outreach of the community — the phone calls, the emails and everything else, of people, saying ‘Please open back up.’” Miller said. “We are definitely looking for the next location.”
Since acclaimed chef Jesse Houston helped put his mark on the Jackson landmark in 2017, it has garnered an impressive list of local and national honors, including being named the Most Instagrammable Restaurant in Mississippi by The Food Network. That distinction comes mostly from people celebrating birthdays, taking photos with giant sparklers provided in a dessert and the subsequent online postings.
The restaurant is known for its “Dad Bod Tots,” gourmet burgers, and over-the-top milkshakes, among many other things. Its burgers have been named Best Burger in Mississippi in 2019 by dealymeal.com.
“From my first visit to every visit after, Fine & Dandy won me through their incredibly high commitment to customer service,” said Jennie S. Brantley, a self-proclaimed Foodie of Jackson. “I’ve met Ray-Scott several times. He’s protective over his concept, food, staff and the restaurant, and he is always going to fight for them. But he will listen to customers, and he has always been above board. His commitment to integrity and quality is instilled in his staff, which is why I returned to Fine & Dandy. Oh, and the food was delicious.
Josh Hall of Brandon has been a frequent visitor of Fine & Dandy as well with his family. Hall said he understands the restaurant’s pressure the last couple of years.
“Fine & Dandy represents The District (at Eastover) to me,” Hall said. “They were the home base of that development. To see them close based on the effect of the past two years is hard. I hope they find a new place in the metro to resurrect.”
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Despite all the accolades and well wishes, Miller said he knows he and his group have not always been perfect.
“My gosh,” Miller said. “We have learned an enormous amount over the last five years about mostly what not to do. We have made a ton of mistakes, and we have learned from our mistakes.”
As for Houston’s future with Fine & Dandy, Miller said the chef, who has also has been a part of Saltine Restaurant in Fondren and has worked previously with such chefs as Wolfgang Puck and Stephan Pyles, will likely help serve as a consultant but may not stay on in a full-time capacity.
However, Miller said the vision of Fine & Dandy, with its “Grandma chic” vision inspired by Betty White and its eclectic mix of vintage dishes, will remain the same.