Midnight Sun Wesley Case covers the city's after-hours scene

Mad River in Federal Hill to become the Charles this fall

Federal Hill nightlife veteran Mad River Bar & Grill closed in May for a rebranding. Now, management has decided on a name and concept.

The bar and restaurant at 1110 South Charles St. will become the Charles this fall. Operating manager David Yike declined to give an opening date due to ongoing construction.

The new name represents a new, more refined approach to the business, Yike said. He said the aim is for the new establishment to be known more for its food than being a dance spot on weekends — a shift in emphasis from Mad River, which opened in late 2003.

“We still plan to make sure everybody has a good time at night, but we really, really are putting our main focus on the food because that’s what was lacking before with us,” Yike said.

It’s too early to discuss particulars with the food, but they plan to hire a chef next week, he said.

Mad River regulars, Yike said, will not recognize the location when it reopens.

“That was our goal, the whole time, was to make sure when you walk in you feel like you’re walking into a completely different space,” he said. “It is a huge transformation.”

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