October 8, 2021
Audrey Nashville Fuses Appalachian Tradition and Japanese Taste
Audrey’s design is split into distinct yet cohesive sections, each resonant with textural similarities and shared materials. On the first floor, the main dining room conjures the grassy hills and tree-lined mountains of Appalachia. Lush green chenille banquettes sit beneath a ceiling of hand-raked porcelain tiles that reference Southern basket-weaving patterns, the walls are adorned with pieces from Brock’s personal collection of Southern folk art, and native woods are woven throughout the space.
The restaurant acts as a showcase of local talent, including lighting design, ceramics, wallpaper, and furniture. At the top of the main staircase sits a hand-rubbed, blackened steel bar topped with live edge walnut, surrounded by Japanese-style lounge furniture custom-made from local live edge white oak. Above the bar, custom hanging fixtures serve as lighting, speakers, and herb-dryers.
The restaurant also features a more intimate, pared-down dining room for chef’s tasting and small parties. Nestled between an open kitchen and an innovative, glass-fronted “research and development lab,” the room’s modern black and white palette contrasts with the warm wood accents. The lab, which doubles as a five-seat dining space, features concrete counters and high-tech equipment designed for the kind of specialized culinary preservation projects Brock is known for.
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“Sean knows what’s necessary for exceptional, functional restaurant service,” says Katie Vance, partner and interior designer at Powell. “That’s an amazing asset. We worked hard to incorporate his extensive knowledge into the design, while still making it beautiful.”
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