Rafaelian Launching Locally Sourced Restaurants in 2018

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Carolyn Rafaelian’s newest venture Bar and Board

Carolyn Rafaelian, the CEO of Alex and Ani, will be launching a new locally sourced restaurant concept in 2018.

The name of the restaurants are the “Bar and Board” and will feature breakfast, lunch, dinners, cocktails, and, of course, cake.

“We are currently tapped into a number of our favorite local drink and food gurus to craft a Rhode Island culinary experience and brand that is completely innovative and new,” said a spokeswoman for Alex and Ani.

Four locations are scheduled to open in 2018 and early 2019.

The first to open this year will be the location at Wayland Square and followed up shortly by a location in Newport on Thames Street. Both were formerly Tea and Javas.

The 282 Thames Street location is in the midst of being transformed and both locations are going through extensive renovations.

The Newport location has been closed since 2015 due to a fire.

“Carolyn will be targeting four Rhode Island locations to be the first in a new restaurant concept. The first to open, early in the New Year, will be the Wayland Sq location (currently Teas and Javas), Newport will follow with the kickoff the summer season, Likely in June. The Thames Street location is currently under major construction, targeting a full restoration of the building,” said the spokeswoman.

“(In Newport) there will be two-floor dining and bar experience, as well as an outdoor Pergola for water-view dining.

The new venture will be a big play in the Rhode Island restaurant community as the concept will be tapped into locally sourced foods and connect local suppliers and brewers.

“Wayland (Square) renovations will kick off after the holiday season and will be a much quicker project as to minimize the amount of time the street has a closed storefront. While we currently have an excellent team (at Teas and Javas that will carry over in Wayland, we will be hiring chefs, bartenders and waitstaff for the Newport location (and some additions to Wayland) as we get closer to an open date.

For Rafaelian, 2017 will be a difficult year to top. Alex and Ani opened its first international store in the United Kingdom, the company added 15 west coast locations, and she appeared on the cover of Forbes as one of the richest self-made women in America.