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Park Café Lives up to Local Expectations at Its Wilmington Location

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Operating partner of Jamestown Hospitality Group Paul Bouchard opens up about the Park Café eatery that marries old and new.

The pressure is on Park Café to honor some beloved legacies. For instance, the name pays tribute to well-heeled Wawaset Park. From 1997 to 2018, the building housed the café Movable Feast, which was sold after co-owner Steve Horgan died suddenly in 2018. The charming structure was also the headquarters of Blackwell & Sons, a painting company founded in 1908. Chris Blackwell, owner of Jamestown Painting, partnered with hospitality veteran Paul Bouchard to open Park Café. They own Jamestown Hospitality Group, whose portfolio includes Tonic Seafood & Steak. Although only open since January 2021, Park Café is living up to expectations.

Describe Park Café’s services.

Park Café offers soups, salads, sandwiches and prepared foods. It’s also the home of Jamestown Catering. Moving catering out of Tonic into a commercial kitchen allows us to take events to the next level. We started a fun brunch menu that will continue to evolve. We will release an early evening snack menu with Tonic’s short rib egg rolls, our own cheese spreads and homemade crackers and other fun snacks to enjoy with a bottle of wine on the patio. As we move into fall, you see some of Chef Patrick Bradley’s creative flair.

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How much did you renovate?

The biggest change is the patio, which is an oasis with porcelain tile flooring surrounded with limestone boulders. It is covered with a 24-foot-by-16-foot pergola with louvers. We added French doors in the café that invite people out to the patio. Inside, we removed the old ceiling and left the rafters open.

How have you won over Movable Feast fans?

Maura Mirarchi, the old café manager, is a familiar face for the loyal Movable guests. She not only knows the Movable crew but remembers what most of them like to order. Regulars have been craving some of Steve’s old items, including the tuna fish sandwich. Maura pulled a blue bench from the furniture removed from Movable Feast. She remembers Steve’s fondness for it. It is now out front of the café under the big picture window as a welcome to the new Park Café.