The opening of the Bristol Café & Catering one month ago brought more than just a delicious breakfast and lunch option to Downtown Statesville. The renovation of this historic building brought to life a piece of Statesville’s history. The owners brought a wide knowledge of food, from Havana to New Orleans, and it shows on their menu. And it brought a son home to be with his mother.
Jeff and Joanie Hustead have a successful, high-end catering business in Charleston, SC that mostly caters to a major music venue. They have served stars such as Melissa Etheridge and Chris Botti, and are known for their ability to provide specialized food cooked on site.
After watching his mother battle health problems for years, Jeff decided it was time to come home to Statesville to be closer to her. Naturally, his talent for cooking led him to open the Bristol Café, but not before months of backbreaking work to renovate the space. New floors, new walls, a new kitchen and equipment, plus added space for dishwashing and storage makes the place look like new. Paying homage to a piece of the building’s history, they named the Café after the Hotel Bristol, which opened 100 years ago this summer. Hotel room doors, with room numbers still attached, adorn the bar and the hallway, and an enlarged copy of the original Hotel handbill hangs on the wall.
Jeff and Joanie’s travels and experiences have helped them create a menu that brings a little bit of Louisiana, South Florida, and Charleston to Downtown Statesville. The menu offers unique flavors such as the Pressed Cuban Sandwich, Mojo Pork, Smoked Meatloaf Cupcakes, and Muffalettas. Many have tried and loved the LowCountry Shrimp-n-Grits, Gyro, and Shrimp Tacos. No matter what you order, you can be sure it was prepared by hand from scratch in their kitchen. For example, they grind their own beef and lamb for gyro meat, make their own Greek seasoning blend, and bake their own pita bread.
Although he admits this last month has been a whirlwind, Jeff is so thankful for the patience and understanding of his patrons while they work out the kinks. “I appreciate the kind words and great reviews. We are overwhelmed with the small town quality of support.”