Parts & Labor, the butcher-centric restaurant in Remington, is relaunching with a more casual vibe and a new menu, adding more sandwiches, snacks and sides — at cheaper prices.
“Parts & Labor has been an evolving type of thing in that time. It felt a little disjointed to us. It wasn’t quite clear what the restaurant part of Parts & Labor really was,” said owner Spike Gjerde, the James Beard Award-winning chef known for his farm-to-table approach. “Now we know. It’s about sandwiches and great local beers.”
Gjerde said that the changes have been in discussion for the past six months. The restaurant, which originally opened in April 2014, will be closed Wednesday and Thursday before relaunching Friday.
The more casual menu will focus on hearty sandwiches, ranging from $8 to $14, and build-your-own soups that feature homemade broths. Entrees on the former menu were in the $20-$30 range.
“We haven’t really had soup,” Gjerde said by telephone Tuesday afternoon. “We make the most beautiful stocks you’ve ever seen. Brothy soups are a new mainstay. I love it. It’s a create your own.”
Gjerde also recommends the Parts & Labor burger, which is a “classic” served with lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle on a sesame seed bun; and the Dad Bod, which features pit beef, smoked ham, Käsekrainer sausage, onion, tiger sauce, and a dab of barbecue sauce on a house-baked bun.
“It’s an excellent representation of what Parts & Labor is all about,” Gjerde said of the Dad Bod sandwich.
The new Parts & Labor will also emphasize inexpensive, local beers, according to Gjerde.
This will include a limited-time Snake Oil Black Lager, a collaboration with Flying Dog.
“I haven’t even tried it yet,” Gjerde said. “But they brew it with the hot pepper mash from our Snake Oil hot sauce.”
The restaurant used to feature a gigantic wooden Fort McHenry-era American flag on its back wall. That is being replaced by a wall of black chalkboard paint, which will allow for art. Outside of the restaurant, a number of games — including a ping-pong table from Gjerde’s home — will be available to entertain customers.
“I love the space here,” he said. “This new approach is more in line of the way it’s laid out. It makes a lot of sense.”
The restaurant will also feature happy hour every day: Monday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday through Sunday from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Specials, which are subject to change, will include: $5 wine; $1.25 16-ounce draft Peabody Heights Old Oriole Park; $3 select drafts; $5 whiskey any way; and bar snacks starting at $3.
On Friday and Saturday everything on the menu will be 50 percent off. The restaurant will host a block party from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday, during which guests will be allowed to sample from the restaurant’s new beers and sandwiches for $5.