COVID-19 doesn’t thwart Yellow Rocket Concepts’ downtown Bentonville restaurant plans

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 3,722 views 

Northwest Arkansas restaurant owner Ricky Cortés told the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal recently that Bentonville restaurant Azul Tequila was planning a second Mexican restaurant in the city at 111 N. Main St., on the downtown square.

Cortés, the president of the family-owned business, said he’s targeting a mid-September opening for Azul Tequila Bistro.

Before that, another new restaurant — and new jobs — will arrive on the square, albeit delayed due to COVID-19. Little Rock company Yellow Rocket Concepts says it’s still planning to open a new concept called Bentonville Taco & Tamale Co. (BTT) at 101 W. Central Ave., in a 5,600-square-foot space previously leased to Fiamma 1873.

“We’re excited to report that we are on track to open late spring/early summer of this year,” Amber Brewer, Yellow Rocket Concepts’ creative director, wrote in an email. “Once the interior [demolition] of the space is completed, we will start our build-out. Our Instagram page [@bentonvilletaco] will begin posting updates soon.”

Yellow Rocket Concepts’ announced the new restaurant March 11, 2020, with a scheduled opening this past fall. The global pandemic put those plans on the back burner.

BTT will feature Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes with local, seasonal and Arkansas-inspired influences, all created by Yellow Rocket Concepts executive chef Scott McGehee, a 2020 inductee into the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame.

Yellow Rocket Concepts owns and operates nine Arkansas restaurants and one brewery. That includes Rogers eateries Local Lime and Big Orange.

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