Mar 15, 2024 - Food and Drink

The Writer's Room bar will open in the former Protagonist spot in NoDa

Rendering of the inside of a bar

Rendering: d3 Studio

The Writer's Room is a new bar by Cory Duran, owner of The People's Market in Elizabeth.

Why it matters: It's going to be a bar that highlights and celebrates local artists of all genres.

The big picture: The Writer's Room aims to be the kind of bar that will cater to NoDa's artist-centric identity — something that the neighborhood has prided itself in since the 80s but has been grasping to hold onto as Charlotte grows.

"I appreciate growth, but I also want to respect the culture [and identity] of the neighborhood," says Duran, who grew up in NoDa.

Man standing in middle of restaurant with mural behind him that reads "Elizabeth"
Owner Cory Duran, pictured here, is a writer (hence the name) and is currently working on a sequel to his first book "Random Thoughts From a Random Guy." Photo: Emma Way/Axios

The vibe: Duran says you can expect a chill atmosphere that caters to good conversation, whether it's for a date or a meeting.

  • There won't be loud music, but there will be opportunities for local artists to feature new tracks. "Maybe you got like a new song or EP you just want to come in and play for a small group of people," Duran says, adding that The Writer's Room is the kind of place you'll be able to do that.
  • It'll also feature works of art by local artists, which Duran has always celebrated — peep the murals inside The People's Market.

Dig in: To start, The Writer's Room will offer light bites like charcuterie. Eventually, the menu will expand to offer tapas.

  • Its drink menu will have a selection of wines, local beers, and classic cocktails with local spirits.

Stop by: The Writer's Room will be located at 3123 N Davidson St., a 1,500-square-foot space in the heart of NoDa that formerly housed Protagonist, and NoDa Grocery before that.

What's next: Duran hopes to open The Writer's Room by this summer, but says it depends on permits.

Check out the renderings by local architecture firm d3 Studio:

rendering of a bar
rendering of a bar
rendering of a bar
rendering of a bar
rendering of a bar
rendering of a bar
All renderings by d3 Studio
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