We were there on Saturday, and it was just great. PACKED! An early rush and a late rush. A waitress told us they're swamped every night except Tuesday (so make it on a Tuesday...). My wife and I sat at the copper polished bar. The food was what you'd expect from Jeff Barney - simple, hearty, interesting, delicious. I had pork carnitas with onions and peppers braised in Fullsteam Lager; my wife had a chicken leg quarter with garlic green beans - each came with mashers. Full flavored, rich and good. My carnitas had a slightly asian tinge to them - some soy, or fish sauce, not cumin and chile as I'd expect. No matter, it was a fine dish. The only let down was the salad, which we got just to have something fresh- but the local greens in Saxapahaw in January included tatsoi - which I think needs to be braised, or it's too grassy - and hothouse tomatoes (meh). The arugula was good- just arugula with a lemon dressing and a shave of local cheese would have suited. Tres Leches cake for dessert, excellent.
One beer, one wine, salad, 2 entrees, coffee, dessert - fifty bucks. A phenomenal deal- and there are loads of entrees in the $10-15 range. Can't wait to go back.
We've been (unsurprisingly, I know) a few times and love the place. The opening has been getting progressively less soft since mid-December and new things are coming in stages.
The food is very good. For me it is pretty similar to the food at the store (high end comfort food) but they now have the luxury of a real kitchen and are using it to great effect. Each time we're there, they have more options on the menu and seem close to full speed now.
The beer and wine selection has been small but well curated. I expect it will grow over time. The beers are locally focused (Fullsteam, Lonerider, etc). The wine by the glass is a shockingly good deal ($5 glasses of wines that retail for $15). They are not (I think) planning to do mixed drinks.
The space will continue to expand as they finish more of it. Even with the limited advertising it has been pretty crowded most nights and absolutely once. The room is lovely, really well designed and thought out. I'm looking forward to spring when the big balcony will be open.