Chef YongWon Hwang Taking Up Space in The Archive at Counter-

The Counter- chef de cuisine hopes to eventually open a brick-and-mortar
Chef YongWon Hwang Taking Up Space in The Archive at Counter-
Photo: Official

Counter- chef de cuisine YongWon Hwang is preparing to open his pop-up concept KOA in The Archive at Counter-, located at 2001 W Morehead St, Suite D.

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Early last month, What Now Charlotte reported on James Beard Award finalist Sam Hart closing his Wesley Heights wine bar, Biblio, to grow his flagship restaurant, Counter-. The space was set to become a separate dining room called Archive, featuring a seven-course tasting menu of the restaurant’s best hits. Now, it’s become more apparent what will take over the space, with Hart searching internally for inspiration.

Hwang will take over The Archive from February 23 through March 30, first reported by Unpretentious Palate. The concept will offer a regular menu that will eventually be replaced with KOA dishes on a seven-course menu, with service being overseen by Hwang. Reservations are open now at $95. Following its run, the space will revert back to serving former Counter- dishes at a lower price point tasting menu at The Archive. Hwang tells What Now Charlotte the pop-up will give a glimpse into his future restaurant concept, where guests can taste the unique flavors of his Korean heritage and the flavors and techniques he has learned in working in restaurants in France, Australia, and the USA.

While Sam Hart is busy opening his new Italian concept, Spaghett, coming to Uptown Charlotte’s Fourth Ward at 224 W 10th Street, Counter- still provides a space for future restaurant owners to perfect the craft. One of the restaurant’s priorities is to help its staff grow beyond the restaurant, with Hart implementing a three-year timeline for employees to either take on a greater role in the restaurant group or to start their own concepts. The KOA residency will allow Hwang to gain more experience with his concept, allowing him to transition to his standalone restaurant, which he is actively working towards.

“Having this pop-up gives me the ability to run my own menu and to showcase my preferred plating and snd design style,” Hwang tells What Now Charlotte. “It also gives me experience with the business side of the restaurant industry. Plus, I’m able to get feedback from customers so that I can continue to improve the experience. I’m blessed to say that I have current investors ready to support my cuisine to open a brick-and-mortar. I am actively searching for a space to begin my journey into restaurant ownership. I can say that South Park is catching my attention at the moment. Ideally, I would hope to find the right space and be open to the public by the end of this year.”

Chef YongWon Hwang Taking Up Space in The Archive at Counter-
Photo: Official
Joey Reams

Joey Reams

Born in San Diego, Joey moved to San Francisco to study Music Journalism at San Francisco State University. There, he worked for several publications, including The Culture Trip and RIFF Magazine, and served as the News Editor at Golden Gate Xpress. Joey previously worked as the News Assignment Editor for Pasadena Now. When he’s not working, you can find him exploring new cities, finding delicious food, and having fun at concerts.
Joey Reams

Joey Reams

Born in San Diego, Joey moved to San Francisco to study Music Journalism at San Francisco State University. There, he worked for several publications, including The Culture Trip and RIFF Magazine, and served as the News Editor at Golden Gate Xpress. Joey previously worked as the News Assignment Editor for Pasadena Now. When he’s not working, you can find him exploring new cities, finding delicious food, and having fun at concerts.

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