Tavern concept sets up on the Southside

The White Horse Tavern will fill a Southside storefront. Photo by Michael Thompson.

The White Horse Tavern will fill a Southside storefront. Photo by Michael Thompson.

An established Richmond restaurateur is galloping into the Southside.

James Talley, along with partners Jim Dickerson, Harrison Steel and Eden Brown, are opening the White Horse Tavern at 3410 Semmes Ave. near Forest Hill Park in August.

Talley is also a co-owner at The Cask Cafe & Market in the Fan and last year sold his stake in The Commercial Taphouse and Grill. Dickerson was Talley’s original partner at the Commercial Taphouse. Steel and Brown both have backgrounds in beer bars in Richmond and Norfolk.

James Talley

James Talley

Talley said White Horse Tavern will be a British-style pub that serves fare such as savory Cornish pasty, fish and chips, burgers and chicken wings. The food will be similar to what was served at the Commercial Taphouse before An Bui of Mekong Restaurant & Bar took it over. At least one English beer will always be on tap, and cask beer will be available, too.

“We’re focusing on British food with local ingredients,” Talley said.

Talley said he’s always liked the area near Forest Hill Park and saw a need for another dining option on the Southside.

“There’s just a huge need for places to walk to, sit down and relax,” Talley said. “There’s a huge need for restaurants and social gathering places in the area.”

The White Horse will join Crossroads Coffee & Ice Cream and Chef Mamusu’s African on Main in the neighborhood.

Talley said his landlord is doing most of the construction on the 2,500-square-foot property, which was formerly home to a Jamaican eatery. Grayland Avenue Properties owns the building, according to city records.

Talley said he and his partners hope to keep their expenses under $200,000. They are financing the new venture themselves.

Plans for The White Horse were first reported by Richmond.com.

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tamara Smith
tamara Smith
6 years ago

Liquor licenses should not be granted to businesses within,say, at least 100 yards of a school. Patrick Henry elementary school sits at the intersection of Forest Ave & Semmes Ave. Aren’t there any ordinances to support the above?

Chris Terrell
Chris Terrell
6 years ago

I wish these folks the best, I think there is a lot of growing demand in the Forest Hill / Old Manchester area for more restaurant options (this would be 10 minutes away for me). Legends was just packed (with good reason!) on a recent Wednesday night. With all of the new housing that has sprung up in this area another good restaurant / pub would be a welcome addition. I am only surprised that strip of buildings has taken so long to fully revitalize given its excellent location.

Brian Ezzelle
Brian Ezzelle
6 years ago

In Carytown there is a porn shop across the street from a child care center. They seem to co exist fine.

Lamont Jones
Lamont Jones
6 years ago

But it’s ok to have a convenient store sell alcohol near the school?

More commerce can only benefit the area’s future. Especially, a place were friends can meet after work or families can dine.

It’s not like it’s a liquor store. It’s a restaurant that also happens to serve alcohol. No different than an Applebee’s, except better because it’s small business, which is only a positive for a growing neighborhood.

Jane Bowe
Jane Bowe
6 years ago

We can’t wait for this pub to open. That block has been a nightmare and caused nothing but trouble for the neighborhood for years. The Forest Hills/ Woodland Heights area is desperate for just this kind of restaurant and we are hoping it will be a huge success and encourage others to come on over.

James Talley
James Talley
6 years ago

We will have fine beer and wine but no liquor. We are a restaurant. Thanks for all of your comments.

Mike Porch
Mike Porch
6 years ago

By all means, don’t allow a place in a neighborhood that people can walk to and have something to eat and drink just because it’s near a school. It would be much better to have people driving home past the school after they go out.

Buffy Harvey
Buffy Harvey
6 years ago

I can’t wait, the menu sounds wonderful!