This article was written by Jennifer Thomas and published in The Charlotte Business Journal on May 29, 2024. To read full article, visit:

Salted Melon Market & Eatery has set its sights on Eastover with plans for future growth.

The brand will debut a smaller prototype that delivers its fast-casual offerings through counter service. That 2,378-square-foot restaurant — the second for Salted Melon — will be at 815 Providence Road. It is targeting an August opening.

Salted Melon in South End exterior with cars parked in front and people approaching restaurant
Current Salted Melon (photo courtesy of Google) located at:
100 W Worthington Ave Suite 107, Charlotte, NC 28203

Salted Melon expects to invest roughly $350,000 to transform that space — currently a Hubee D’s. It takes over the space on June 1, owner Thomas Coker says. The ownership group is also behind Reid’s Fine Foods.

The spot seemed perfect for the brand given its location on the edge of Eastover and Myers Park — and its high visibility, Coker says.

“We think we can capitalize on both of those,” he says.

Salted Melon serves healthy and everyday gourmet offerings. There will be favorites such as the avocado toast or the Bandito breakfast burrito. The Perfect Pesto Caprese stands out in the lineup of sandwiches. Salads, bowls, wraps, smoothies, coffee, espresso and tea are offered as well.

But the decision to scale back the Eastover location and offer counter service only was strategic, Coker says. Roughly 70% of revenue at the Salted Melon’s first location in South End is driven by counter service, coffee and the bakery components.

The new model will help control labor costs. A smaller menu keeps food costs in check and is just easier to manage overall, Coker says.

“We feel people are comfortable ordering at the counter and are still getting an elevated experience,” he says.

The Eastover footprint is 65% smaller than South End, which also offers a full-service restaurant and market. Salted Melon’s first location debuted in summer 2022 on the ground floor of Lowe’s Tech Hub. It recently gained the attention of Southern Living magazine, landing on its list of “The Best New Restaurant in Every Southern State in 2024.

Robbie Adams, with MPV Properties, represented the landlord.