After several months of calling 7th Street Public Market home, Jimmy Pearls’ last day at the uptown Charlotte location is Saturday. This means you have one last chance to go get your favorite fish sandwich — for now.
Don’t worry, chefs Daryl Cooper and Oscar Johnson are already busy making plans for next steps, including a permanent location. “We got a lot of stuff we want to do, but right now it’s about building capital,” Johnson told CharlotteFive on Friday afternoon. “We’re trying to appeal to what people want but at the same time, doing it with integrity — not just throwing some stuff in the fryer.”
“In other words, not selling out,” Cooper said.
Jimmy Pearls was born out of a desire for the chefs to showcase foods from their home — the Tidewater region, the 757, the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. “We wanted to infuse that with our classical cooking skills and showcase that to Charlotte itself,” Cooper said.
The restaurant was located at Common Market in March then moved temporarily to the Uptown Yolk space at 7th Street Public Market in June.
The restaurateurs make simple, fried fish and other seafood, burgers and more.
“We are refining seafood and we are elevating what has been typical at other seafood spots,” Johnson said. “Right now we are transitioning, giving everyone that food truck fare — for right now.”
Next up is planning for the Jimmy Pearls food truck and a future brick-and-mortar. And don’t worry, the fish sandwich will always be on the menu.
“All of our food is going to have history behind it, for instance: The Uncle Gene’s fish sandwich is a homage to my grandmother and his uncle,” Cooper said.
The fish sandwich may be the popular choice, but don’t sleep on the burger, either. “We got something for everybody,” Johnson said. “We’ll have a few burgers going into the day. We’re not prioritizing the burger, we want y’all to get the fish. But if you’re in a mood, then you’re like: ‘I was able to go to Jimmy Pearls and get the burger …’”
No matter what you order, just go, Johnson said. “Y’all come on down to Jimmy Pearls, man. Last couple of days, come through. We’ll take care of you — y’all are family.”
7th Street Public Market (224 E. 7th Street) until Feb. 27