Investor prepares to open Aiken restaurant which serves Italian cuisine with a Mediterranean twist
The real estate investor and entrepreneur who opened a French bakery and restaurant known as La Parisienne last year is preparing to launch another restaurant in Aiken.
David Meunier recently acquired the property at the corner of York Street and Hampton Avenue where Church’s Chicken once stood.
Its plans include a major renovation of the 1,750 square foot building there.
Once the work is completed, the renovated structure will house a restaurant serving Italian cuisine with Mediterranean accents.
Meunier has yet to make a firm decision on a name, but said his new business would likely be called Scuderia, which is the Italian word for stable, or a building where horses are kept.
The equine influence is not surprising as Meunier has become a staple in polo locally. He is a player but also a patron who unites and finances teams.
âI love Italian food, but the Italian food that is here, I don’t like it,â said Meunier. âI’m not saying it’s not good food, it’s just not to my liking. I don’t like heavy, thick pizzas. I don’t like a lot of sauce all over the place. You can eat Italian, and it can be very healthy.
Therefore, the focus will be on lighter fare in his Northside restaurant.
âYou’re not going to eat a sauce with pasta,â Meunier said. “You’re going to eat pasta with sauce on it.”
And the pizza will have a “very thin” crust, he added.
There will be a $ 100 option, with toppings such as smoked salmon and caviar.
But plenty of low-cost choices in the $ 12- $ 14 range will be available, Meunier said.
To help him with the restaurant, Meunier has someone who he says will provide expert advice.
âI’m bringing in an Italian who has an Italian restaurant in Charlotte to set it up and run it,â Meunier said. âIf he wants to be a partner, he will be a partner. I don’t have a problem with that. “
There will be a take out window, and guests will be able to dine indoors or out, where there will be protection from the elements in inclement weather.
They will also have the opportunity to have their automobile cleaned.
âIt will be more like a detailer than a car wash,â said Meunier. âWe will not use water and we will not use chemicals. It will be environmentally friendly.
This service will be reserved for restaurant customers.
“People will not come and drop off their cars,” Meunier said.
He would like to be able to open the restaurant next year in April at the latest.
Based on Aiken County land records, Meunier purchased the former Church’s Chicken site at 455 York St. NE for $ 135,000 on behalf of 865 Marion Ct S LLC.
The deal was reached on October 28.
âI walk past it every day,â Meunier said. “It’s ugly. It’s not good for the neighborhood. I’m going to make something cool with it.
The seller was South Carolina Representative Bill Clyburn, D-Aiken.
He is happy that Meunier is dramatically improving the property.
âI wanted to do something to improve the area, but I couldn’t afford to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in it,â Clyburn said.
On behalf of SSPP 2 LLC in 2019, Meunier purchased the La Parisienne location in Chesterfield for $ 200,000 from Olive Oils LLC.
Once upon a time there was a restaurant called Olive Oils.
He has also made many other real estate investments locally. They include the purchase of housing in popular neighborhoods to renovate and rent as well as rural land for his farm and La Bourgogne polo center.
And he’s looking to spend even more money in this part of South Carolina after recently selling a lot of properties in Florida.
âAiken is such a lovely town,â said Meunier, who was born in France and raised in Switzerland. âThere is so much to do here. “