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All up in your business: Ice Cream, barbeque and biscuits

Smitty's Homemade Ice Cream will open a location at Blue Dogwood Market at the end of the summer. Photo courtesy of Blue Dogwood Market.

Blue Dogwood Public Market

Blue Dogwood Public Market, an indoor year-round market that promotes small businesses, plans to add an ice cream shop and a barbecue place to their list of vendors this Summer.  

Smitty’s Homemade Ice Cream, based out of Burlington, North Carolina, will open a satellite location next to the The Bar within the market. 

Smitty’s is well known in Burlington for their handmade, small batch ice cream, and the shop is hoping to bring that to Chapel Hill, said Blue Dogwood partner and consultant Sarah Boak.

They plan to serve eight rotating flavors, including classics like vanilla, chocolate and strawberry, as well as vegan options and sorbets. 

“A lot of our vendors and customers here are vegan,” Boak said. “Focusing on those vegan ice creams, I’m really excited about, because those can be really hard to find.”

Blue Dogwood and Smitty’s plan to experiment with flavors and toppings to add some creative flair to the ice cream and involve customer input.

In addition to ice cream, Blue Dogwood will also be getting a new barbecue option. 

Big Belly Que is a startup by Garret Fleming, who previously served as chef at the now-defunct Motto restaurant in downtown Durham. 

Fleming had kicked around the idea of starting a barbecue place for a while before deciding to open Big Belly Que. 

The barbecue will be done in a classic, southern fashion, which means being smoked on wood, outside and overnight, Boak said. 

The menu of Big Belly Que will include pulled pork sandwiches, smoked turkey, smoked sausage and sides including mac and cheese. 

Both Smitty’s and Big Belly Que are expected to open some time this summer, likely before the start of the fall semester. 

Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen is a town favorite located on E. Franklin St.

Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen

Sunrise Biscuit Kitchen is closed for maintenance following a fire on Friday, June 21

The fire is believed to have been caused by a short in the main power line. Power was being restored at the time of the fire because of storms the night before, owner David Allen said. 

No one was at the restaurant when the fire occurred.

“I’m very happy that nobody got injured,” said Allen. “We can fix things, that can all be fixed.”

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The Chapel Hill Fire Department and Chapel Hill Police were quick to respond to the fire and contain it, Allen said.

The fire was contained to a small area of the restaurant. Most of the damage was to electrical equipment, which was blown out in the process of the fire starting.

Allen doesn’t know what the costs of the fire will be yet, but the biggest impact will be the loss of sales. 

Though covered by insurance, Allen said the restaurant would rather be open.

“We’re used to being open and staying busy,” Allen said. 

In over 40 years of business, the restaurant has closed rarely, even through storms and snow, Allen said. 

Sunrise management hopes to be open by July 12, if everything goes well with inspections and the power company.

Allen said he is grateful for the outpouring of support and cooperation of everyone involved in getting the business running again.

Both restaurant regulars and customers from out of town have stopped by. Allen says it is gratifying to see people make a priority out of coming to the restaurant. 

“I hope everybody has a big appetite for chicken biscuits when we get back open,” Allen said.


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