Red Rocks Cafe plans change to improve diner’s experience

The patio will be wrapped around to the front of the restaurant to add more outdoor seating.

Jan. 18. By TL Bernthal. Red Rocks Cafe is modernizing and renovating the Birkdale Village location to the tune of  $600,000 to $700,000, the local co-owner says.

Ron Herbert, who lives in The Peninsula, and John Love developed the contemporary American restaurant concept in 1988 that now has three locations – South Park and Birkdale Village in North Carolina and Red Stone in South Carolina.

What to expect

Ron Herbert in front of Red Rocks Cafe in Birkdale Village.

A few of the big changes at Birkdale will be a wine room and a bigger outside patio, Herbert says. Work on the wine room is under way, while the patio is waiting on permits to start.

The patio will be extended to the front of the building near the valet lane and probably add six tables, have a quality awning and sliding doors that can opened in nice weather to better see the new entertainment stage / big screen and the greens area, Herbert says. The valet parking lane may become a drop-off spot for diners.

“People ask me what I think of the changes North American Properties made,” Herbert says. “We want to be part of the change North American has made,” Herbert says. “Anyone who spends $20 million to improve things outside your business, it’s good.”

North American Properties, the owner of Birkdale Village, completed a $20 million re-do of the lifestyle center this year.

Temporary closing

Once all permits are in, the restaurant close for four weeks sometime between February to May to complete work.

The restaurant was last renovated four years ago after a fire, Herbert says, so the work is not that extensive this go-round.

“We want to make it better for our guests,” Herbert says. “We have to continue to serve good food and provide good service.”

Some patrons have been dining at Red Rocks for 20 years, he says.

New things coming

Herbert is excited about their wine room, which you see when you enter the restaurant. “We sell quite a bit of wine.”

Almond Mahi

The menu will change some, he says, but he’s not sharing secrets on that just yet.

The wait staff crisis during the pandemic, when it was hard to match the customer experience to normal times, is over and Red Rocks is fully staffed, he says.

“We’re excited about the changes and re-branding,” Herbert says. “We want to be here for another 15 years at least.”

In for the long haul

Red Rocks Cafe at Birkdale Village has another year or so on its lease, and then plans to sign a 15-year extension, Herbert says.

 “You have to change all the time to be a better restaurant. You always have to get better,” he says.

He hopes the improvements will increase sales between 10 percent and 20 percent.

Update Jan. 18

Work is continuing at Red Rocks Cafe in Birkdale Village, with a mural completed by Charlotte artist Nico Amortegui, who was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia.  Some of the new awning will be up in early February. The expanded outdoor seating area and other renovations will mean the popular restaurant will close temporarily,  probably in March. No work is being done in the kitchen so the closing will not be long, possibly a week, owner Herbert says.

Part of the mural on the back wall. Photo | Red Rocks Cafe


No comments yet.

Post a Comment