New cantina, bar and upscale gaming venue coming to Optimist Hall

Photo by Andrew Cebulka

When you show up to El Thrifty Social Club, you’ll want to be hungry and ready to be entertained. Optimist Hall’s newest tenant will bring scratch-made Mexican food, craft cocktails, DJs, dancing and an array of games.

White Point Partners and Atlanta-based Paces Properties announced the Mexican cantina, bar and upscale gaming venue will arrive at Optimist Hall later this year.

“El Thrifty Social Club is the missing piece to the entertainment puzzle, joining a heavily curated food and beverage mix,” Jay Levell, a partner and co-founder at White Point Partners, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to welcome them to Optimist Hall, and this brings us one step closer to opening.”

Photo by Andrew Cebulka
El Thrifty Social Club’s Greenville location

This will be the second location of El Thrifty Social Club, with the first opening earlier this year along the Swamp Rabbit Trail in Greenville, South Carolina. It will be brought by Reid Olsen and Joe Lariscy, who opened Queen Park Social in early 2017.

[Related: Here’s every vendor that’s been announced at Optimist Hall—including The Dumpling Lady and cocktail bar Billy Sunday]

Games will include pelota, Belgian feather bowling, fusbol, ping pong and snookball. If you don’t know what half of them are either, they have the rules listed on their website — you can study before you go.

The social club will span 6,391 square feet of space and will be on the lower level adjacent to Billy Sunday and Fonta Flora.

Photo by Andrew Cebulka
El Thrifty Social Club’s Greenville location

Robert Berry, formerly of Charleston’s Slightly North of Broad and New York City’s Cookshop, will serve as executive chef.

El Thrifty’s all-day menu will include items such as a Chicken Torta with spicy slaw, Oaxaca cheese, refried beans and chipotle mayo, or Pozole Roja with pork, hominy, radish, chicharrones, cilantro, lime and tortillas; or SC Fish with avocado verde cruda and pineapple cucumber salsa.

Saturdays and Sundays will offer brunch. The Greenville menu features Pollo y Waffles with local honey and greens, a Chingon Plato with steak, eggs, rice, beans, potatoes, avocado and a Taco Dorado with sweet potato and mushroom.

Photo by Andrew Cebulka
El Thrifty Social Club’s Greenville location

You can also expect an extensive list of agave-based spirits, mezcal and tequila for craft cocktails. Local craft beer and wine will be offered, as well as and locally roasted Methodical Coffee.

Optimist Hall (once called Tompkins Hall) is a 146,000 square foot redevelopment of a former mill, built in 1892, that will include a food hall, retail, restaurants and office space. It’s just a block away from the Parkwood Station of the LYNX Light Rail. Tenants will begin opening in the spring.

Courtesy of Optimist Hall


  1. Another upscale resto catered exclusively to the Masters of The Charlotte Universe — the wearisome and miserable tech and finance bros and their sororistitutes.


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