Chef Tim Chung works with his hands but these days it’s not just to prep food. He’s building some of the tables he’s going to use in his new café opening in downtown Mooresville.

Tim’s Table sounds as eclectic as the owner, who built his own pipe organ from scratch for the music room in his home (which is a whole other story for another day). Chung, an engineering grad, is a veteran chef having worked in numerous restaurants and upscale hotels like the Ritz-Carlton.

Most recently he was Chef de Cuisine at Epic Chophouse in Mooresville. Tim’s Table is scheduled to open this spring.

Tim Chung

Right now the space along Main Street looks more like a construction site as crews work to restore some of the original character to the 1906 building.

Inside, Chung said, “I’m not going to have anything that matches on purpose.”

The décor will include an 1890 crystal chandelier out of a Chicago jewelry store, a gilded 7-foot by-7-foot mirror that takes three men to carry and chairs he’s picked up at flea markets.

“I have a dozen or so already sitting at my house,” he said.

 The café will be open six days a week from 7 a.m.-9 p.m. Chung plans to serve up sandwiches, paninis and soup.

“I’m a soup guy,” said Chung, who keeps his library of recipes on a small yellow legal pad.

The breakfast menu will include favorites of nearby business owners who want a sausage biscuit and grits as well as healthier options like fruit and overnight oats, along with locally sourced coffee. Chung wants lunch to be fast and friendly, promising a sandwich in three minutes.

“I’m not going to be the reason someone is late getting back to the office,” he said, laughing.

The restaurant should open just in time for warmer weather to make good use of the small beer garden outside, giving people a place to enjoy a drink after work.

Beer garden

It’s clear Chung loves this town. As we walked down the street, part of his daily routine, he picked up a piece of trash from the sidewalk and explained how he hopes to complement what already exists in the area including the soon-to-open Famous Toastery and the craft beer house On-Tap.

Chung wants his place to be a place for people to connect, get on their way if they need to, but stay because they want to. He recently bought a guitar and piano to put in the restaurant just in case anyone feels like playing. Did I mention he found the piano on Craigslist around 3:30 a.m.?

Chung said, “Now that I’m doing this, I don’t sleep.”

Tim’s Table: 133 N. Main St., Mooresville

Photos: Allison Andrews

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