For many foodies, the notion of finding a chef-driven restaurant in the suburban landscape outside of Atlanta would inspire total disbelief. However, with the arrival of Seed Kitchen & Bar at Merchant’s Walk, the people of Marietta have a celebrated piece of gastronomic culture to call their own. The personal venture of Chef Doug Turbush and his wife, Seed Kitchen & Bar is a farm-to-table, open-kitchen concept that goes one step further. Designed by ai3, Seed is an open-house concept, built to reflect the personal passions of its owners. It is a warm and friendly space, carefully assembled to feel as much like the Turbush’s second home as their business and restaurant.
Much of the personality that drove ai3’s design for Seed was inspired by the chef’s own photography and travel experiences. In fact, the first elements that greet guests as they enter the restaurant are two large pieces of artwork that anchor the dining room. These custom compositions are mosaics created with the chef’s personal photographs. At close range, they reveal images of the chef, his family, his travels and his rare ability to capture the beauty of food.
Throughout Seed, a sense of warmth is derived from the vaguely-Scandinavian design. Woods and whites provide the primary color palette allowing for the red hues that dominate the artwork to shine. White bentwood chairs provide seating and, with legs dipped in red paint, add a pop of color and whimsy. Simple butcherblock counters and tabletops play off white shelving and gray fabric curtains to add a modern residential aesthetic.
The open-house concept comes to life at the chef’s table, which is Seed’s center stage. Here, a large L-shaped counter opens into the kitchen. Behind the butcherblock counter, Chef Turbush can plate food for and before his guests. At one end of the counter, the chef’s table offers an intimate spot for guests to eat and visit with the chef. Behind this spot, the chef’s personal library of cookbooks is on display.
Simple and warm, the bar at Seed is designed as a place to share the restaurant’s collection of wines, pour a cold beer, or mix craft cocktails. Outfitted with benched high tables, oversized booths and a custom communal table, the bar is a friendly space to meet friends and share a cocktail. Like the rest of Seed, the bar is first and foremost a gathering spot.