By mid-August, Sisters gift shop in downtown Matthews will close.
Though owner Sonya McHugh told Matthews-Mint Hill Weekly this week she hasn’t ruled out the possibility of relocating, for now she’s preparing to close up shop. Until closing day, all merchandise is 25 percent off, excluding NOVO jewelry. McHugh said low sales volume, likely prompted by a lack of nearby parking, contributed to her decision to close. The store opened in September.
“It is with great sadness that I am announcing the closing of Sisters,” she told customers in an email. “I have enjoyed meeting everyone and developing great friendships. I have enjoyed assisting you in your gifts needs. Thank you for making this a wonderful experience and you will all continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.”
Sisters is located at 116 W. John St., suite B, and is open Tuesday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
For more information, call 704-996-0781.
Café 157 hires new chef
A Morocco native who grew up in France is the latest addition to the Café 157 kitchen.
Chef Moh Bantalab has helped restaurant owners at 157 N. Trade St. in Matthews revamp the menu and alter recipes, infusing French cooking techniques when he can. He served as a corporate chef for Earnhardt Racing in Mooresville from 2005 to 2011 and was head chef at the former La Bibliotec in Charlotte’s SouthPark from 1999 to 2005.
The Charlotte father says cooking found him while he was enrolled at Oklahoma University majoring in pre-medicine. His father, who was a pharmacist, hoped his son would enter the medical field. But Bantalab said he quickly discovered it wasn’t for him.
“Somehow I fell in love with cooking and it took me away,” he said, adding he gets much of his inspiration from his mother. “My mom doesn’t have any recipes, but what she does is amazing.”
At Café 157, Bantalab has perfected the Crème Brulee, and added a Moroccan hummus. Also on the menu are fried buttermilk chicken, $17; grilled Scottish salmon, $22; and roasted pork tenderloin medallions, $21. Lighter options are available during lunch, including almond chicken salad, $9; Mediterranean veggie wrap, $8.50; fried Alaskan cod sandwich, $9.50; baja fish tacos, $9.50 and half-pound burgers for $9.75.
The eatery is open Monday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 5 to 9p.m.;Friday 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 5 to 10 p.m.; and Saturday 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 to 10 p.m.
For more information, call 704-844-8686.
Art gallery plans grand opening
Local artists and art enthusiasts are invited to explore a new a haven in Matthews Saturday, July 28 when The TAG, or Teena’s Art Gallery, hosts its grand opening.
The shop at 110 S. Ames St., behind El Valle restaurant, is the pride and joy of owner and artist Teena McDonald. McDonald enjoys drawing and painting with watercolors herself, but welcomes local artists of any medium to sell their work through her shop on consignment. Most artwork ranges from $40 to $500 with McDonald offering a two-month payment plan for purchases of $400 or more. The shop includes custom printing and laser-engraving by Clyde Baumwell of Baumwell Digital Graphics and framing by Michael Heeg of Charlotte‘s Visual Attraction.
The grand opening will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. July 28 and visitors can register to win one of McDonald’s original paintings or a box of chocolate truffles.
For more information, call 704-844-0956 or visit www.teenascorknbean.com.
Want free McAlister’s tea?
McAlister’s Deli locations nationwide will offer all visitors a free glass of tea Thursday, July 26, for its annual Free Tea Day.
McAlister’s has a location in Matthews at 2217 Matthews Township Pkwy., suite A, in the Sycamore Commons shopping center.
For more information, call 704-846-1711.