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April 12, 2024

Side Angle Side delivers an interior for Tiny Grocer

In Austin, local architects Side Angle Side and Thoughtbarn collaborated on a new location for Tiny Grocer, a boutique grocery store, and a small French bistro called Bureau de Poste. The bistro is helmed by chef Jo Chan of Top Chef fame, and its name takes cues from the architecture itself—both grocer and bistro are new activations within the shell of a Midcentury post office. The revitalized structure is located in Hyde Park at the intersection of West 43rd Street and Speedway.

Interiors are flooded with light and accented with green paint (Likeness Studio)

The designers wanted to pay homage to Tiny Grocer’s original location on South Congress—a white brick building with a black-and-white striped awning. To achieve this, the post office’s original ocher-colored brick was painted white, and the striped pattern can be found on the patio’s seat cushions. Thoughtbarn led the architectural renovation, and while Side Angle Side was originally only tasked with the interiors, it became involved in the evolution of Bureau de Poste.

restaurant with bar seating
A bar area unites the grocery with the bistro (Likeness Studio)
restaurant at Tiny Grocer
The old parking lot is now an outdoor patio for diners (Likeness Studio)

What was originally a small cafe within the grocer became “a full-blown restaurant” when a patio was added on the footprint of the old loading dock. Arthur Furman, the firm’s founding partner, told AN that “the outdoor space became absolutely essential for that capacity.” Fifteen hundred square feet of asphalt was stripped from the parking lot, regraded, and paved with reclaimed brick sourced from San Antonio. A vine-covered trellis made from steel pipes covers the southern end, and where trucks used to dock there are now generous steel-framed windows.

ground floor plan of Tiny Grocer
Ground floor plan (Courtesy Side Angle Side)

Inside the grocery there are other choice details like exposed joists, the same naturally finished birchwood shelving used in the original location, and a bright green accent wall behind the checkout counter. Overall, the palette is complemented by the white quartz countertops of the bistro and a central bar faced in terra-cotta. The corner store is a small yet thoughtful transformation.

Architects: Side Angle Side and Thoughtbarn
Architect of record: Side Angle Side
Landscape design: Side Angle Side and Wild Heart Dirt
Interior design: Side Angle Side
Structural engineer: Creative Engineering
MEP engineer: ATS Engineers
General contractor: Archive Properties
Windows and doors: Q Construction
Roofing: Soprema
Waterproofing: Huber Engineered Woods
Insulation: Rockwool
Lighting: Juno, WAC, AQ Lighting
Appliances: Ecolab, Jennair
Furniture: Isimar, Wooden Soul
Landscape furniture: Loll Designs
Terra-cotta tile: Seneca
Countertops: Quartz

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