A sampling of recent work done by clients of Pick N Paint Pottery gives a reminder that just about any image can be transferred onto pottery to be painted. COURTESY PICK N PAINT POTTERY

It has been an exciting few weeks on the local business front, with a number of entrepreneurs announcing new ventures and one big name on locals’ business wish list officially coming to Beaufort County.

Aldi makes it official: There have been rumors for close to four years that popular discount grocer Aldi was coming to the area. The company founded in Germany has about 2,000 stores in 36 states and had filed plans with the Beaufort County Design Review Board in June 2018. Those approvals expired after a year, but the retailer resubmitted the plans in August 2021 and were reapproved soon after to build at 1131 Fording Island Road in a 21,000-square-foot space that was previously planned to be a Fresh Market.

The company also submitted plans Jan. 28 to change the awnings in front of the building from the Fresh Market colors to match their orange and blue logo. On Feb. 4, Aldi began advertising for a full-time assistant store manager position at the location.

Both county and Aldi officials have confirmed that the location is planned to open by the end of 2022 as part of Aldi’s 150-store national expansion.

The grocer will occupy the end-unit space in the shopping plaza at the corner of U.S. 278 and Burnt Church Road that currently includes Hobby Lobby and PGA Tour Superstore.

We will now go from zero Aldis in Beaufort County to two apparently, as the company also plans to open in the new Beaufort Station shopping center at the southwest corner of Robert Smalls Parkway and Parris Island Gateway in Beaufort. For now, the closest way to scratch that Aldi itch is by traveling to their Pooler location.

New restaurant coming to Main Street: Limoncello Cibo Italiano is the name of a new Italian restaurant coming to 1203 Main St. behind the original Frankie Bones in Main Street Village. Co-owners Jose Islas and Paul Paulauskas worked for more than a decade together at Truffles Café and will now bring their expertise in their first restaurant. Islas said the duo are waiting on permits and approvals and renovating the space in hopes of mid-spring opening.

Now open:

Pick N Paint Pottery, 843-305-7490, pickpaintnplaypottery.com: You’ve probably seen paint-your-own-pottery brick-and-mortar studios where you can bring your friends to create unique keepsakes. Pick N Paint is a different approach, a mobile studio where the party comes to you. They provide the pottery, paint, supplies and instructions needed to create your own masterpiece. Once you finish painting, they fire your pottery and deliver it back to you. The company is also planning pop-up events throughout the area. Pick N Paint is now accepting reservations for any kind of event, from baby showers to corporate events, family reunions to ladies’ nights.

On Point Selfie Studio, 70 Pennington Drive, Suite 4, Bluffton, 843-338-1579, onpointselfiestudio.com: Kristie Morse Cochran has opened a unique concept, putting a different spin on a portrait studio geared toward posting content on social media. The studio offers a variety of backdrops that will rotate throughout the year to create interesting settings to add to your Instagram. Sessions are $20 per person for a 45-minute session. Kids 6-9 years old are $10 and kids 5 and under are free with parent’s paid admission. The business is cash only at this point, but there is an ATM available in the Sheridan Park parking lot.

O’Hara Outdoors, Bluffton, 843-502-6200, oharaoutdoors.com: Michael O’Hara began his landscaping and hardscapes business in St. Louis over 25 years ago, and is now opening a branch of the company in the Bluffton/Hilton Head area. The company offers more than 50 different services, from mowing, weed and rodent control to landscape maintenance and perennial plant care. The company also offers irrigation system installation and maintenance and design and build services for hardscape projects.

Epps Plastic Surgery and FACE Aesthetics Medical Spa, 29 Plantation Park Drive, Suite 302, Bluffton, 864-546-8973, matheweppsmd.com: A familiar face is returning to the area, as Dr. Mathew Epps is set to open in Plantation Park. Epps grew up in the area but has spent the past 15 years training and mastering the specialty. Epps is the only area plastic surgery to have completed multiple fellowships in the field of plastic surgery. He said the practice will be a medical spa experience with the addition of the FACE Aesthetics spa, offering services such as injections, fillers, chemical peels and more. Epps specializes in facial rejuvenation work such as facelifts and eyelid repairs, as well as breast surgery. The practice is now accepting new clients and booking appointments.

Coming soon:

We’ve heard from many of you wondering when the “coming soon”  signs in Moss Creek are turning into actual open businesses. Well, it appears March is the answer for both businesses.

Mama G’s Pizza Bistro Bar is planning a soft opening in the first week of March at their 1533 Fording Island, Suite 302 location.

The restaurant is a lifelong dream for “Mama G” and “Papa G,” a pair of New Jersey transplants ready to share their pizza mastery with the Lowcountry.

Mama G’s promises a unique boutique experience and a top-notch digestible pizza (the highest compliment you can pay an Italian pizza maker) as the main attraction. The bistro will also offer a variety of small plates, salads and paninis, along with a large selection of craft sodas, regional craft brews and Italian beers and wines, as well as amaros, aperitivos and digestifs. Call 843-227-9691 or visit mamagpizzahhi.com.

Right next door, Mastery Golf Performance is also targeting an early March opening. PGA professional Bill Schmedes III will offer private adult lessons of data-driven coaching based on science and technology with a turf putting green and impact screen bays offering a full litany of swing insights. masterygolfperformance.com

Kyra Restaurant Seafood and Grill is planning an early March opening in the space formerly occupied by Cornerstone Grill in Okatie’s Riverwalk Marketplace at 149 Riverwalk Boulevard, Unit 9. Chef and owner Sedat Olgun is a Turkey native who did his first culinary training on Hilton Head Island before working at restaurants in Los Angeles and later opening his own restaurant in Ohio. Krya is the name of his only son, and in Turkish it means peace, kindness and the biggest favor from God.

Kyra will offer a wide variety of appetizers, wood-fired flatbread pizzas, salads, sandwiches and lunch and dinner entrees using only the freshest ingredients. Olgun said he always dreamed of returning to the Lowcountry with his wife and three kids and now he looks forward to becoming part of the community and a family gathering spot. kyrarestaurant.net.

Unique concept coming to Mathews Drive

Robert Costello has been in the hospitality business for 30 years. He’s been a bar manager for celebrity chef Robert Irvine and helped launched eateries from New York to Los Angeles. He has been in the Lowcountry for the past 15 years and most recently owned Munchies in Main Street Village.

Now Costello is getting ready to open Public Kitchen and Wine Bar in Port Royal Plaza, with a grand opening planned for March 11. Costello said the space at 95 Mathews Drive will be an ever-evolving venue with live music, to-go meals and a commissary kitchen that will both be rented out for private chefs and used to offer area corporate chefs a chance to be the celebrity chef for the evening cooking their own menu. Costello plans to host food trucks on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and has designed the tapas and wine bar after a 1920 speakeasy, complete with a full array of old-school cocktails.

Public Kitchen will also feature an emerging artist each month, with a wall dedicated to the artist’s work and a special event hosting the artist once per month.

The venue will be a 25-and-older venue with cigars for sale. For more information, look for “publickitchenwinebarhhi” on Facebook. 

Tim Wood is a veteran journalist based in Bluffton. Contact him at timwood@blufftonsun.com.