GILBERT, AZ — ‘Belly Kitchen & Bar’ is known for its “confluence of Vietnamese, Thai & Japanese” dishes and will now be sharing its flavors in the East Valley. That's right, the second location of Belly is now open at the Epicenter in Gilbert!
“It’s a great low-lit date night spot, a bit romantic-you know- but also very casual. Like come as you are- it’s not stuffy- if you want to dress up you totally can, if you want to come in [with] cargo shorts, that’s totally fine too,” said Michael Babcock, culinary director and Co-Founder at Instrumental Hospitality, in an interview with ABC15.
WHAT TO EXPECT
According to Babcock, this new location is much bigger than their Phoenix location and this space allows them to have different equipment- like a grill- and allows them to offer a “full service, full-menu style restaurant.”
“Gilbert will also feature some more like large format style plating for big parties and families, like whole fried chicken and whole fish [or] something like a Tomahawk Style Steak,” shared Babcock.
PASSION BEHIND THE CONCEPT
"Belly" is the first restaurant from Instrumental Hospitality Group. The concept behind the kitchen and bar goes beyond just being a business, it hits home for Babcock
“Basically, Belly’s concept is a collection, [it's] 15 years of passionately studying food from that region, for me. Traveling to Vietnam, spending a month in Thailand just to study the food of the northern area of Thailand. It’s a part of my cooking history since I was 20 years old,” shared Babcock with ABC15. “I’m also part Japanese and raised by my Japanese grandmother, so there’s a… personal side to it; it’s food that I grew up around. I love it.”
IF YOU GO
- New location at the Epicenter: 3150 E Ray Rd #180 in Gilbert
- Melrose location: 4971 n 7th Ave in Phoenix
WHAT ELSE IS NEW IN GILBERT?
The video in the player above showcases O.H.S.O. Brewery’s 'The Park' in Gilbert; another new addition to the East Valley. You can read all about it, right here.