As revealed by Faiyaz Kara for Orlando Weekly in a recent foodie news roundup, Market on South (Facebook | Website) in the Milk District is closing up shop.
The space, which opened back in 2015 at 2603 E. South Street [GMap], was originally home to both Dixie Dharma and Valhalla Bakery, but Dharma ended up vacating the premises during the pandemic to prep a new space in East Orlando while Valhalla Bakery continued on in the Milk District until everything was ready for the move to the historic Fort Pitt building on Old Cheney Highway.
We told you HERE in September 2020 that the former general store/laundromat tucked away between Baldwin Park and Semoran Boulevard was going to be converted into a new food hub but those plans have been delayed due to supply chain issues and construction hiccups.
Shaun Noonan, the owner of Dharma Southern Kitchen (formerly Dixie Dharma), shared with Bungalower that the Fort Pitt project was still being built out, albeit slowly.
“We still want to make our own little mini district over there. We’re calling it the Cheney Collective now. It’s a really ignored little corner of Orlando and it needs a lot of help but we’re excited about the project.”– SHAUN NOONAN, DHARMA SOUTHERN KITCHEN
The property is owned by local developers Luke Wilson and Adam Wonus, who have plans to add townhomes to the rear of the lot, building in an adjacent population of hungry customers for the project, which will be home to Valhalla Bakery and Dharma Southern Chick’n (a new fried vegan chicken concept), as well as a third retail business called Moon River Boutique, though according to Noonan, nothing had been signed at the time of our phone call.
Once everyone is in their new home at the Cheney Collective/Fort Pitt is up and running, Market on South will become something new. Noonan shared that he was planning to renovate it into another concept for his Dharma Southern Kitchen brand but he had shifted to looking for new tenants to sublease the storefront to instead. The leading concept for the space is a business in Winter Garden that is looking to relocate, though he wasn’t comfortable naming names until a contract had been signed.
“I just really want to help add something that’s missing to the Milk District neighborhood and I’m taking my time finding the right fit. It’s a great space and I don’t want to let go of it yet.”
The Cheney Collective has a projected opening date for sometime this May, contingent on final inspections with the City of Orlando.
The Winter Garden business is that kava bar that’s being targeted for supporting the LGBTQ community. I saw their post about looking for a new space, and what took place. That would be one of the things the Milk District is missing. As for Market on South and those who own/work there….I just hope they learn to treat people a little nicer. Unfortunately, I experienced a “not so nice” attitude by some both in 2015 & during the pandemic. I get things can become overwhelming and busy but good customer service skills still apply no matter how stressed or frustrated one may be feeling.