Brian Hainley, in terms of the restaurant business, has serious credentials.
The owner of Mason’s Restaurant & Grocery, set to open officially January 14 in Aberdeen, Hainley has been involved in the industry for about 20 years. He developed a taste for the business while accompanying his father, who operated a restaurant equipment company.
“He traveled quite a bit,” Hainley said. “I was able to go on a number of trips.”
After retiring, Hainley’s dad purchased a restaurant, where his son gained valuable experience. Attending the legendary Culinary Institute of America, in Hyde Park, N.Y., made the younger Hainley a trained chef.
“That was quite an experience,” Hainley said. “It was a great environment to learn.”
Since graduating, Hainley has owned restaurants locally and in Tennessee. He returned to Moore County to be closer to family.
“I moved here from Nashville,” Hainley said.
While Hainley brings unquestioned expertise, he’s quick to say Mason’s, named for his son, is a family operation.
“This really is a collaboration,” he said. “My wife and I did this together. She inspired a lot of the finer details.”
Unlike some other eateries offering breakfast, lunch and brunch, Mason’s won’t have the feel of a typical diner or greasy spoon.
“We’re a scratch-based kitchen,” Hainley said. “Our portions are healthy. You won’t leave hungry.”
The menu, for a restaurant that will seat 53 people, is substantial.
“We’ll have different omelettes and biscuits,” Hainley said. “There will be a lot of Southern elements.”
Mason’s will also feature a full bar.
“We’ll be offering a lot of brunch cocktails,” Hainley said.
As far as location, Hainley was initially looking at other sites.
“I was focusing on Southern Pines,” he said. “But I really liked the building and the old architecture.”
Since deciding on a location in Aberdeen, Hainley’s become committed to seeing the growing district thrive.
“We want to help draw more into this area,” he said. “We want to bring something into Aberdeen.”
Although Mason’s is just getting started, its owner is already immersed in several aspects of the trade, including the fast pace.
“I really like coming up with concepts,” Hainley said. “Each concept is different. I also enjoy the cooking aspect.”
Mason’s Restaurant & Grocery is at 111 N. Sycamore St. Their hours are Tuesday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
For more information, go to: https://eatatmasons.com
~Written by Sandhills Sentinel Reporter Dave Lukow.