In a sign that the vibrant and nationally renowned culinary scene in Providence continues to grow, a new restaurant, birch, will be opening this summer from acclaimed chef Benjamin Sukle and Heidi Sukle. The Sukles released the news today that they will be taking over the former Tini space at 200 Washington Street and opening a restaurant serving “modern American cuisine rooted in classical technique, with dishes made from the best of our region’s season environment.”
Anyone who has had the pleasure of dining at The Dorrance, where Benjamin Sukle currently is Executive Chef, knows the skilled precision of his cooking. There Sukle has created delicious dishes that have made it one of Rhode Island’s, and indeed New England’s, top dining destinations. The Sukles will be participating in the upcoming Eat Drink RI Festival and we look forward to the opening of birch. Following is their full media release.
HEIDI AND BENJAMIN SUKLE TO OPEN NEW RESTAURANT IN PROVIDENCE
birch will serve modern American cuisine rooted in classical technique
PROVIDENCE, RI (March 20, 2013) — Chef Benjamin Sukle and wife Heidi are proud to announce their first restaurant venture, birch, coming to 200 Washington Street in downtown Providence, Rhode Island. With over 30 years of combined hospitality experience, The Sukles are excited to introduce their modern and progressive approach to the food and drink scene in Rhode Island. Birch’s dinner menu will be crafted utilizing the best that Rhode Island and New England’s seasonal environments provide, while its beverage program will focus primarily on small-batch, artisan producers. Birch is expected to open in the summer of 2013.
What is birch?
“We’ve taken the name from childhood nostalgia. Pennsylvania Dutch-style birch beer was something we both loved growing up,” says Sukle, who along with Heidi, is a Pennsylvania native. “In the same way a birch tree starts from its roots, we will take a ‘from the roots up’ approach to not only food and drink, but also when it comes to our guests.” The opening of birch also happens to coincide with the couple’s fifth wedding anniversary, for which the traditional gift is wood.
“The intimate size and ethos of birch will allow us to use limited products that tend to go unnoticed or neglected in our region,” Sukle added. His dedication to the pursuit of underutilized catch from local fishermen, as well as continuing to establish relationships with farmers and efforts to draw from the wild ingredients that Rhode Island grows will help to create a menu that showcases the very best and unique qualities of New England’s seasonal environment.
Heidi and Ben will convert the former Tini space in the Harkness Building on Washington Street into a warm, vibrant room that exposes beauty through raw and natural elements. “With its high ceilings and exposed brick, birch will be an ideal setting for a modern progressive dining experience that reflects an outlook on pure and raw elements,” Sukle says. The intimacy of the location will provide guests an environment where they can interact with fellow diners, as well as the chefs, owners and staff, all while enjoying Sukle’s creative, modern cuisine.
Food and Beverage
Birch will offer an ever-changing a la carte menu. A Johnson & Wales University graduate, Sukle’s cuisine will reflect his time spent at The Dorrance and La Laiterie at Farmstead in Providence, Noma in Copenhagen, BlackSalt in Washington D.C. and Gottlieb’s in Savannah, Georgia. The food at birch will focus on utilizing what the surrounding region and coasts produce, with an emphasis on the natural balance between our farms and oceans. Sukle’s devotion to the development of relationships and friendships with the ever growing farming community has inspired and influenced him in the creation of a cuisine that showcases an increasing and creative use of produce in his dishes. The menu will change frequently in order to take advantage of the most respected purveyors of fruits, vegetables, meats and fish from the New England region, along with the most high quality products grown by local farmers.
Much like its food, birch’s beverage program will emulate a passion for modern, artisan, small batch producers while maintaining a respect for tradition and the classics. Guests can expect a refined and rotating selection of wines, small-craft beers, liquors and unique cocktails. Given the intimacy of the space, guests will be offered a beverage selection that emphasizes originality and value over more familiar and mainstream options. There will be focus on procuring, designing and crafting drink selections that will complement the food to create an elevated dining experience.
With an interior space that defies the conventional norm for a restaurant, birch will fit perfectly into one of the most exciting and rapidly growing areas of Providence. Birch will integrate seamlessly into a growing and vibrant community of new and long-standing businesses as it strives to solidify Providence and Rhode Island as a premier dining destination.
Enjoy modern American cuisine rooted in classical technique, with dishes made from the best of our region’s seasonal environment. Birch has built a menu that balances adventure with tradition, enhancing nature’s finest flavors.
GM/owner: Heidi Sukle | Chef/owner: Benjamin Sukle
Opening: Summer 2013
Hours: Dinner Thursday through Tuesday, Closed Wednesdays
Seats: 20 seats
Address: 200 Washington Street, Providence, Rhode Island 02903
Website: http://www.birchrestaurant.com (COMING SOON)