New restaurant in the works in Woodland Heights

A seasoned Richmond restaurateur is diving into the Southside for her fifth eatery.

Laura Lee's

Laura Lee’s will be restaurateur Kendra Feather’s fifth shop in the Richmond area.

Kendra Feather, owner of the Roosevelt, Garnett’s Café and Ipanema, is preparing to open Laura Lee’s at 3410 Semmes Ave. in the Woodland Heights neighborhood.

Still mulling over menu options and bar concepts, Feather hopes to open Laura Lee’s in the former White Horse Tavern by late July or early August. White Horse vacated the 5,100-square-foot Semmes Avenue location in March 2016 after a year in business.

This month, Feather’s business partner and pastry chef David Rohrer opened WPA Bakery Southside a few doors down from Laura Lee’s. Feather is part-owner of the original WPA Bakery in Church Hill.

Laura Lee’s is named after Feather’s mother. It has applied for an ABC license, Feather said.

As Laura Lee’s prepares to open, another neighborhood eatery has shut down.

Paradise Diner, at 2845 Hathaway Drive in the Stratford Hills Shopping Center, closed June 14.

Paradise Diner

The diner’s owners cited “overwhelming costs and expenses” as the reason for closing.

According to a note posted on the restaurant’s door, the owners cited “overwhelming costs and expenses” for closing the diner.

“We believed we offered a great atmosphere of love and acceptance, wonderful service and great food at Paradise Diner,” the note stated. “These are difficult times for small diners.”

The owners of Paradise Diner and the shopping center’s managers – Richmond-based The Wilton Companies – could not be reached for comment Thursday afternoon.

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