Bryant Williams traveled to more than 20 countries in the past year as a tour chef for rap group Migos.
Now Williams, who goes by Chef Baul, is looking to put down culinary roots in Atlanta with his first restaurant.
Chef’d Up is slated to open at the end of September at 701 Highland Ave. NE in Old Fourth Ward, in the space previously occupied by Barrelhouse, Cast Iron, Last Word and P’Cheen.
Williams started his hospitality career 10 years ago as a busser at Cafe Intermezzo, eventually working his way up to sous chef. He assisted the executive chef for rapper 2 Chainz, which led to work as a private chef cooking for celebrities including Kendrick Lamar and Atlanta Falcons players Julio Jones and Grady Jarrett, and the release last year of a cookbook, “Chef Baul’s Instafavorites.”
But the traveling chef life didn’t provide him the stability he craved as the father of two young sons, so he started scoping out locations for his own restaurant.
Chef’d Up’s concept -- fast-casual “upscale soul food” with a healthy twist -- is “everything I served to my celebrity clients,” Williams said. “So everyone that comes in can feel like a celebrity.”
The menu isn’t finalized yet, but will likely include dishes such as lamb chop lollipops, center-cut salmon filets, ribeye steak and lobster tails, as well as burgers, salads (potentially with CBD-infused dressings) and desserts.
Williams, himself a vegetarian, said the menu will also include several vegetarian and vegan options, including an Impossible Burger and a soy-free vegan ribeye steak.
Chef’d Up will also feature a full bar, including custom cocktails.
Williams said the restaurant’s location just off the Eastside Beltline is ideal for the type of young, active customer base he’s hoping to attract.
“I spend a lot of time on the Beltline, and I see a lot of millennials like me,” he said. “I like that it’s close to downtown, but not as cramped with traffic. I always love it when I go over there, and I wanted to be a part of that.”
The restaurant will be open for lunch, brunch and dinner, with tentative hours of 11 a.m.-10 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m.-midnight on weekends.
Check back soon for more details, including an exact opening date and finalized menu.